With a report that surfaced yesterday claiming that Samsung electronics will manufacture Qualcomm's next high-end flagship smartphone SoC, we've got a report from China that shares plans for TSMC's investments for the future. The Taiwanese fab is at the forefront of fabrication with its 7nm Argon Floride based process node, and the company is expected to develop 5nm by next year. Now, a report sheds more light on TSMC's plans for processes beyond 5nm and 3nm. Take a look below for the details.
TSMC Plans To Move Forward To Research The 2nm Process Node In Its Hsinchu R&D Park In Taiwan
Back in December 2017, TSMC announced at a supplier forum that it was investing upwards of $20 Billion in a new facility in Taiwan. This facility will be completed in the early 2020s, and it will allow the fab to move beyond 5nm - a process node that it will commercialize in 2020 if things go according to plan.
Now, we're learning that while the fab's 3nm process is subject to approvals, for the time being, TSMC has already started to look at the future. According to the Chinese media, the company will commence R&D for the 2nm process in Hsinchu. Whether this research will be conducted in the Hsinchu science and technology park isn't clear right now, but it's likely as TSMC has invested heavily in the area.
The publication is quoting Zhuang Zishou who is a senior director at TSMC. Mr. Zishou believes that if TSMC is to successfully research the 2nm process node, then the company will have to focus on Hsinchu as most of the talent is located in the city. For reference, it's relevant to note that TSMC's headquarters are also located in the Hsinchu. TSMC's 3nm plant in Hsinchu will drive up the area's greenhouse gas emissions, and increase electricity and water consumption.
Construction of the plant is expected to commence next year and complete in approximately 18 months, with 3nm mass production projected to commence in 2022. At this point, process nodes are merely marketing terms as key metrics such as pitch and gate width are similar for designs marketed under different headings.
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