Foundry Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. has hit back at analysts who have said it has yield problems with its 28nm CMOS manufacturing processes.
Microprocessor vendor Advanced Micro Devices has decided to cancel APUs that Globalfoundries was set to make for it on 28nm process technology, according to online reports. Instead AMD will start afresh using the 28nm gate-last HKMG manufacturing process technology from alternative foundry TSMC, the reports said.
Maria Marced, European president of TSMC, has pushed back against claims by market researchers at Gartner that foundries are having problems with yield on 28nm process technologies. For TSMC the roll out of the 28nm chip manufacturing node is "on plan," Marced told EE Times.
"[Making] bulk silicon HKMG at 28nm is hard. All foundries are having yield issues and defect density issues right now," said Bob Johnson, research vice president at Gartner.
"It's not about how many cores or how many gigabytes, it's how well you can optimise the system," said Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs... Was that a crack at Google's Android OS?
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TSMC reportedly is raising prices on 28nm wafers.
In the latest look down its road map, Globalfoundries claims it is shipping thousands of 32nm wafers a week, gearing up multiple 28nm offerings for 2012 and planning first customer tape outs using a planar 20nm process at the end of next year.
Apple's latest chip technology won't appear in the next-generation iPad until June 2012 at the earliest, according to a firm that tracks the mobile processor industry.
STMicroelectronics and CMP (Circuits Multi Projets) have announced that the CMOS 28nm process from STMicroelectronics is now available for prototyping to universities, research labs and companies through the silicon brokerage services provided by CMP.
Taiwan's UMC will take the "lead role" in making the OMAP 5 device on a foundry basis for TI, said Kevin Ritchie, senior VP and manager of TI's technology and manufacturing group. For the OMAP 5, TI may work with other foundries, but Samsung does not appear to be one of the candidates. With the OMAP 4, TI has been "dissatisfied" with its foundry arrangement with Samsung, Ritchie said.
Xilinx has begun shipments of its 7 series FPGA, built with 28nm technology.
Toshiba is hammering out a deal to outsource fabrication of advanced system chips to Globalfoundries, the Nikkei business daily reported, citing company sources.
Altera, which along with competitor Xilinx dominates the programmable logic chips market, said it was increasing its 2011 R&D budget by 26% to US$330 million as it introduces a new generation of chips. It will ship a 28nm microchip in the first quarter, and announce more 28nm chip families during 2011.
Renesas Electronics has announced it will cut about 5,000 jobs mostly in the current fiscal year and completed by March 2013. It also revealed plans to use outside foundries on all of its 28nm and smaller geometry semiconductor products.
IBM, Samsung and Globalfoundries are working with STMicroelectronics to develop and standardize advanced, 28nm process technology to ensure consistent production worldwide for electronics and device manufacturers.
Following its recent move to TSMC's high-performance, low-power (HPL) process technology at 28nm, Xilinx is aggressively broadening the reach of programmable logic into the traditional ASSP and ASIC markets with three new FPGA families on its roadmap, the low-cost low-power Artix-7, the Kintex-7, and the high-end Virtex-7 due to be sampling in the first quarter of2011.
Technology managers have strong opinions on the merits of the gate-first and gate-last methods of depositing high-k dielectrics and metal gate electrodes. Controlling the PMOS V appears challenging with the gate-first method, while the gate-last approach requires layout engineers to adhere to new restrictive design rules to accommodate planarization requirements.
The big news at Xilinx' annual analyst day on February 22: A new partner for foundry services at the 28nm node.
Their system-on-a-chip (SoC) platform is based on ARM's Cortex-A9 processor and Globalfoundries' 28nm manufacturing process, and will be used in smartphones, tablets and smartbooks.
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Last summer, TSMC made a surprising decision to use a gate-last deposition method for the high-k/metal gate stack of its 28nm transistors. TSMC'S decision to use a replacement metal gate technique was guided by history, said SY Chiang, in charge of R&D at the foundry.
Xilinx has completed multiple iterations of 28nm test wafers with TSMC, and could disclose the move to TSMC at its analyst day in March.
Globalfoundries will initially provide Qualcomm with access to 45nm LP and 28nm LP technologies with an intended collaboration on future advanced process nodes.
This project seeks to optimize the patterning process from design to manufacturing, extend characterization tools and methods to develop new correction and compensation techniques for reducing variability. The project will also explore lithography options for manufacturing complex chips at sub-30nm nodes.
EDA company Mentor Graphics has entered into a multi-year software and services agreement with Globalfoundries which includes the provision of Calibre software for the design of 32nm and 28nm chips.
Japan's Fujitsu said it would make its microchip unit profitable next year by cutting fixed costs and outsourcing production of next-generation logic chips to TSMC.
Reuters (via Forbes.com)
When we asked Jensen about Globalfoundries, the big man from Nvidia said that Nvidia likes to work with companies that are customer centric. Since TSMC has 200 customers its kind of hard to be in center of attention, while such a thing might be possible with some alternative fab companies, such as Globalfoundies.
The foundry's goal is to have the first tool move in by October 2011, with qualification coming in early 2012 and commercial production by the second half of 2012.
Synopsys has announced TSMC selected its Galaxy Implementation Platform for their new integrated sign-off Flow. The new flow is now available for 65nm designs with planned extensions into other process technology nodes.
The group also has developed a 32nm process and says customers will be able to move to the more power-efficient 28nm technology without a major redesign. Among the members of the joint development alliance is GlobalFoundries, a manufacturing company formed by AMD and Advanced Technology Investment.
In a recent interview, Globalfoundries vice president of manufacturing systems and technology Tom Sonderman said that the company plans to make GPUs using 28nm processes in the near future.
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