TSMC at its ongoing technology symposium held online has unveiled its latest innovations in advanced logic technology, specialty technologies, and the additions of its 3DFabric advanced packaging and chip stacking technologies. The new offerings introduced include N5A for automotive applications; N6RF for next-generation 5G smartphones and WiFi 6/6e performance; and enhancements across the range of 3DFabric technologies.
N5A is the newest member of TSMC's 5nm family, and is aimed at satisfying growing demand for computing power in newer and more intensive automotive applications such as AI-enabled driver assistance and the digitization of vehicle cockpits. N5A brings the same technology used in supercomputers today to vehicles, packing the performance, power efficiency, and logic density of N5 while meeting the stringent quality and reliability requirements of AEC-Q100 Grade 2 as well as other automotive safety and quality standards.
TSMC expects its N5A process to be available in third quarter of 2022.
TSMC also disclosed its N4 development has proceeded smoothly since its announcement last year, with risk production set for the third quarter of 2021.
In addition, TSMC believes its N3 technology will be the world's most advanced technology when it begins volume production in the second half of 2022. Relying on the proven FinFET transistor architecture for the best performance, power efficiency, and cost effectiveness, N3 will offer up to 15% speed gain or consume up to 30% less power than N5, and provide up to 70% logic density gain.
TSMC debuted the N6RF process, which brings the power, performance, and area benefits of its advanced N6 logic process to 5G radio frequency (RF) and WiFi 6/6e solutions. N6RF transistors achieve more than 16% higher performance over the prior generation of RF technology at 16nm. Additionally, N6RF supports significant power and area reduction for 5G RF transceivers for both sub-6 gigahertz and millimeter wave spectrum bands without compromising performance, features and battery life offered to consumers.
TSMC's N6RF will also enhance WiFi 6/6e performance and power efficiency, the company said.
TSMC continues to expand its comprehensive 3DFabric family of 3D silicon stacking and advanced packaging technologies.
For high-performance computing applications, TSMC will be offering larger reticle-size for both its InFO_oS and CoWoS packaging solutions in 2021, enabling larger floor plans for chiplet and high-bandwidth memory integration. Additionally, the chip-on-wafer (CoW) version of TSMC-SoIC will be qualified on N7-on-N7 this year with production targeted for 2022 at a new fully-automated factory.
For mobile applications, TSMC is introducing its InFO_B solution, designed to integrate a powerful mobile processor in a slim, compact package with enhanced performance and power efficiency and support mobile device makers' DRAM stacking on the package.