Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said on March 31 that one of its chip factory workers in South Korea had tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19), but its output has not been affected.
This is the first time a Samsung chip factory employee has tested positive for the virus, although several confirmed cases at the tech giant's smartphone factory in South Korea's southeastern city of Gumi resulted in a temporary suspension.
Chip factories have been largely unaffected by the pandemic which started in China, although concerns over supply disruption have contributed to recent price rises.
"One of our employees at our Foundry fab in Giheung, Korea, has tested positive with COVID-19," Samsung said in a statement, referring to the respiratory disease caused by the virus.
"Those who had been in close contact with the employee are currently in self-isolation and the employee's work area has been closed off for disinfection," Samsung said, adding that cleanrooms remained in operation.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.