Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Talison, the world's largest supplier of tantalum ore announced last night (Nov 25th 2008). they were closing the Wodgina tantalum mine in Australia. This mine supplied 50% of the world's supply of tantalum ore. The closing of the mine, to take place in December 2008, will have a major impact on the ability for capacitor manufacturers to make anodes. Expect dramatic price increases on tantalum capacitors and there to be short supply and allocation. There are no alternative resources that are viable to Wodgina, so the impact will be substantial. Tantalum capacitors are required for the production of notebook computers, game consoles, MP3 players, car electronics, defense electronics and medical implants. For volumetric efficiency, especially between 100 and 1000 microfarads in small case sizes, design enegineers have no viable choice but to use tantalum capacitors. Expect tantalum capacitor prices to skyrocket.