The worldwide semiconductor equipment market grew 143 percent in 2010 to nearly $41 billion as the market recovered from the industry slowdown of the previous two years, according to final results from Gartner. All major market segments grew significantly in 2010 with automatic test equipment (ATE) sales up by 149 percent, Wafer Fab Equipment (WFE) sales up by 145 percent and sales of Packaging Assembly Equipment (PAE) up by 127 percent. “The semiconductor equipment market soared in 2010. Driven by the pent-up demand from the 2008 and 2009 downturn, and a stronger economy than projected, 2010 just kept getting better and better,” said Klaus Rinnen, Managing Vice President, Gartner. “Memory and foundry spending were the key drivers, although all areas showed significant growth,” he added. The share of the top 10 semiconductor capital equipment companies rose nearly 2 points in 2010, accounting for 63.4 percent of total revenue, up from 61.6 percent in 2009. The recent earthquake in Japan is going to have a near-term impact on the industry, depressing quarterly revenue in the second quarter of 2011. However, Gartner analysts said semiconductor equipment manufacturers should be able to recover in the second half of the year.