[News] European Silicon Isle Boosts Intel, Closing in on TSMC

2023-12-11 Semiconductors editor

According to ChinaTimes’ report, Intel’s strides in European chip manufacturing are narrowing the gap with TSMC.

The Fab 34 in Ireland has taken a significant step in production using EUV for the first time, with Intel 4 technology equivalent to the original 7nm. The research firm IC Knowledge has once assessed that Intel 4 is ahead of TSMC’s 5nm process, emphasizing energy efficiency, which makes it more suitable for mobile devices.

Industry sources note that the upcoming Meteor Lake CPU will adopt the Intel 4 process, and Intel 3 is planned for release by the end of the year. With Intel’s Ireland facility entering mass production, it significantly reduces the gap with TSMC.

Meteor Lake is poised to become the first processor utilizing Intel 4 fabrication technology, marking a milestone as the inaugural process to support EUV lithography exposure.

While the Compute tile is manufactured using Intel 4, the Graphic tile, SoC tile, and IO tile are completed using TSMC’s 5/6nm process. Industry source suggests that TSMC still maintains superior yield rates and more advantageous production costs.

Intel is establishing an advanced semiconductor manufacturing value chain in Europe. Fab 34 in Leixlip, Ireland, is operational, and there are plans to build a fab in Magdeburg, Germany, and an assembly testing facility in Wroclaw, Poland. This positions Intel ahead of TSMC in global layout.

Intel aims to regain a leading position in process technology by 2025, and will receive the industry’s first set of High-NA EUV lithography exposure equipment by the end of the year. The “Intel 3” will kick off vigorously. As Moore’s Law reaches its limits, TSMC, as a frontrunner, will face a gradually narrowing gap with competitors.

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(Photo credit: Intel)

Please note that this article cites information from China Times.