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Intel Corporation Message Board

  • semi_equip_junkie semi_equip_junkie Apr 18, 2012 12:17 AM Flag

    TSMC - one size fits all

    Red transcript about Intel roadmap - I think TSMC is just pulling dates out of their rear end.

    TSMC to offer only one process at 20-nm
    SAN JOSE, Calif.—Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (TSMC) will offer only one process at the 20-nm node, a change from the multiple processes that the foundry giant has offered customers for the past several nodes, a TSMC executive said Tuesday (April 17).

    Speaking at TSMC's annual technology symposium here, Shang-yi Chiang, executive vice president and co-chief operating officer at TSMC, said the firm might also offer an 18- or 16-nm process node after 20-nm if lithography technology is not available to make 14-nm devices cost effectively.

    Chiang said the TSMC initially planned to offer two 20-nm processes, presumably a high performance process and a low-power process. Both processes would have featured high-k metal gate (HKMG) technology and FinFET 3-D transistors.

    But, after some development, TSMC determined that there was not a noticeable performance difference between the two 20-nm processes, Chiang said. Because 20-nm linewidths are so small, approaching fundamental physical limits, there isn't much room for tweaking design rules to specify different gate lengths and other requirements, Chiang said.

    TSMC offers four processes at the 28-nm node: a high performance process, a low power process, another low power process with HKMG and a high performance process geared for mobile applications.

    TSMC expects its 20-nm HKMG process to be in production next year. In 2015, TSMC wants to commence production at the 14-nm node.

    But the semiconductor industry is waiting on extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, which has been delayed several times. To date, no power source has been developed to provide the power and stability necessary to enable volume production at sufficient throughput. Lithography tool vendor ASML Holding NV is working with several power source developers on the technology and has pledged to make available tools with sufficient throughput later this year for commercial chip production in 2013 and 2014.

    But many in the industry remain skeptical that EUV will be available in time to support the aggressive roadmaps of TSMC and other leading-edge chip manufacturers. Chiang also noted that lithographers have made a great deal of progress on the 193-nm immersion lithography to the point where it could be a commercially viable alternative at 14-nm. However, Chiang said, 193-nm immersion might require triple-patterning on some layers and double patterning on many layers in order to achieve adequate image fidelity, which would make it too costly for volume production.

    Chiang said TSMC is "thinking very carefully" about whether to offer an 18- or 16-nm process. "If we choose this node, we will have to offer it to customers for 10 years," Chiang said.

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    • -I did a Wiki on Morris last year:- Why don't you do an exit on the INTC board as well & go wave your TSMC pom poms somewhere else?

    • DAN how about 5o percent production rate with 20nm, when will that be?

      I just want to compare with intel, oh speaking of them, will that be FinFet or planar.

      Dan you are so knowledgeable they should hire you!

    • #Xilinx collaboration with #TSMC said to extend to 20nm http://www.digitimes.com/news/a20120416PD216.html #EDA #SEMIEDA #SEMICONDUCTORS Successful 28nm roll out.......

      "Xilinx has shipped its 28nm FPGAs to more than 90 customers for nearly 350 design wins. Xilinx chose TSMC's 28HPL process to build its 7-series FPGA family. United Microelectronics (UMC) was previously contracted to make its 5- and 6-series FPGAs."

      You folks need to join SemiWiki so you can stay current. Put "Wally" in place of a LinkedIn profile and I will make sure you get in.

      Xilinx, Altera, Qualcomm, Broadcom, Nvidia, AMD, Apple, etc... will have TSMC 20nm tape-outs by the end of 2012, just my fanboi opinion of course.


    • Thank you for the explanation.

      I agree the comments regarding margin squeeze during a new process transition were definitely idiotic. Another guy (Gus Richards I think) also had a screwed up understanding of this during the CC Q&A when comparing the margins during this (22nm) transition with those of the 32nm transition. The guy was comparing this quarter with a quarter from the 32nm 'transition' which was later on in the ramp of 32nm and not the CapEx heavy quarter of the actual transition.

      When will investors wise up to these guys?

      The average investor who banks on the advice of these weasels would appear to have better odds plopping his hard earned money down in a casino. (given the rampant corruption on Wall Street it's probably not too much of a stretch to conclude that oversight at casinos is better then on WS)

    • Overall leadtimes have decreased for equipment, steppers are the worst case scenario - ASML discloses that they are highly dependent on Zeiss - a German company that provides the optics - optics are probably the bottleneck.
      I figure 6 months + 3 months to get it going

      1.) TSMC needs to guess for its customers way in advance - that's difficult considering with the dynamics going on in end market;
      also equipment makers try to optimize their financial metric - so there is no equipment sitting in inventory

      2.) They way TSMC operated so far with 2% revenue first quarter and than 10% next quarter is not going to work @450mm.
      Nobody doubts 450mm anymore - it's a question of when.
      Intel just keeps improving their ability to ramp.
      But look at the idiotic headlines @ Barron's "Investors concerned about INTC margins"
      I doubt TSMC is making any profits at @ 28nm - just look at TSMC capex and put it in perspective to 28nm revenue.

      BTW TSMC raised capex which all goes into advanced technology to $ 7 billion and some change

    • Exactly my point. In the end the result is that TSMC cannot meet its customers' demand, and has even warned its customers to go find alternate sources. Anticipating capacity needs is hugely important, and something that Intel is famous for correctly placing its bets on, in good and in bad economic times. TSMC could learn a thing or two from Intel.

      What I am not clear about is once a company realizes that it needs more capacity how long it actually takes to ramp additional capacity into production.

      I would imagine that there is a best case scenario, assuming a mature process technology where all the wrinkles have been ironed out and, in this case, a more worst case scenario where it is their most advanced production process node and getting yields up is more art than science.

      Can anyone knowledgable in this area provide some insight?

      (not looking for fanboi exuberance, just an objective explanation).

      Thanks in advance.

    • Dinner...and $300/hr. Sad to have to go to yahoo message boards to get leads.

    • so? Buy him dinner and he will write what you want. ;^) It still has no effect on the stock.

    • I was there, it was an excellent event, I will blog about it this weekend.

      Morris Chang opened the event with a comment on the 28nm rumors saying 28nm is yielding very well. "28nm yields have met and exceeded plans. Capacity is the only difficulty."

      It will be discussed in more detail on the conference call on Thursday.

      I talked to people about the 20nm node. Customers have known this for some time and are already planning for it. Power could be an issue since you will have to overdrive to get performance. The solution is FinFets at 20nm, believe it.


      • 4 Replies to dnenni
      • "I talked to people about the 20nm node. Customers have known this for some time and are already planning for it."


        Now that's hilarious. They can't meet customer needs for 28nm but those same customers are going to plan on getting 20nm.

        You should read your posts in front of a mirror so you can watch your nose grow...

      • "I was there, it was an excellent event, I will blog about it this weekend."

        Did they buy you lunch?

      • Dan TSMC has capacity, their problem it's all at 45Nm.... correct?

        At 28Nm they can't push enough out the door to make all of their customers happy. Why can't you say that?

        They screwed up... they thought the market was soft and 45Nm was ok and they didn't plan for the 28Nm volume that their customers want or need!

        Do they have a good business model ? Yea customers are hungry for their product.

        Are they in trouble? Well if their customers aren't happy and end up leaving or... if when they finally ramp only to find they're too late up against Intel then yes they might be in trouble.

        You keep saying that everything is rosy for TSMC when they know that they are running up against a freight train on a parallel track to Intel, that merges down to one track, sound familiar?
        It was AMD's track a few years ago.

        Can it be fun for TSMC? I hope 2nd place is as good to them as AMD

      • Nenni - I really don't need your advise neither your input.
        I can make up my own mind - opposite to you I know manufacturing trends.
        I know TSMC is standing in line to buy steppers for double and triple patterning. And I know TSMC will buy more
        Get a hobby - grow peppers or tomatoes or start home brewing.

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