The US chip giant Intel wants to begin test production of chips for its 18A node from the beginning of 2024, the structure width of which roughly corresponds to what is marketed as a 2nm chip. The start of mass production is still targeted for 2025.
Is Intel catching up with TSMC faster?
At the company’s Innovation Day in the Taiwanese capital Taipei, Intel boss Pat Gelsinger expressed hope that his company would soon be able to leave its major competitors among chip manufacturers TSMC and Samsung behind. According to Gelsinger, the path to 2-nanometer chips will be taken very quickly.
According to Gelsinger, many test wafers for 18A chips are currently being produced and are preparing for the start of production. The “invention phase” for 18A chips is now complete, so we are now moving quickly towards production, the Intel CEO is quoted by Nikkei Asia. For Gelsinger, this already shows that the ambitious plan he issued in 2021 can be achieved.
Five node jumps in just four years
At that time, Gelsinger announced on his return as CEO of Intel that they wanted to create “five nodes in four years” and thus significantly accelerate the development of the shrinking structure widths of modern processors. Until now, it has normally taken around two years for a chip manufacturer to achieve a further level of shrinkage in structure widths.
After 2.5 years, Intel has shown that it is actually on the way to developing five nodes within just four years. The production technologies for chips with seven and four-nanometer structure widths, known as Intel 7 and Intel 4, are currently in mass production. Among other things, the new Intel “Meteor Lake” chips are already manufactured in Intel 4.
Gelsinger wants Intel to begin mass production of “Intel 3” chips next year, i.e. chips with a structure width commonly referred to as a 3-nanometer scale. The technology, which is currently still being ironed out, will become the basis for the next generation of Intel processors for servers and PCs.
In the future, Intel primarily sees suppliers of ARM-based processors as customers for its manufacturing business. They are currently working with ARM to prepare for 18A production of ARM chips, which is why every provider of state-of-the-art chips based on the x86 alternative ARM is also named as a customer for the Intel Foundry, says Gelsinger.
- Intel aims to start test production of its 18A node chips, comparable to 2nm chips, in early 2024.
- Mass production of these chips is scheduled for 2025.
- Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger expressed optimism at the Innovation Day in Taipei about overtaking competitors TSMC and Samsung.
- Gelsinger stated that Intel is rapidly progressing towards the production phase for 18A chips, with the “invention phase” completed.
- Intel’s ambitious plan, announced in 2021, was to achieve five node advancements in four years, a significant acceleration from the usual two-year cycle for shrinking chip structure widths.
- Intel has made progress and is currently mass-producing chips with seven and four-nanometer structure widths, known as Intel 7 and Intel 4, respectively.
- The Intel “Meteor Lake” chips are being manufactured using Intel 4 technology.
- Gelsinger plans for Intel to start mass production of “Intel 3” chips, equivalent to a 3-nanometer scale, in the next year.
- This technology will underpin the next generation of Intel processors for servers and PCs.
- Intel is positioning itself as a manufacturer of ARM-based processors and is collaborating with ARM to prepare for 18A production of ARM chips.
- Gelsinger indicates that any provider of state-of-the-art ARM-based chips could be a potential customer for Intel’s Foundry services…
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