Intel Claims their 7nm EUV Process Tech is On Track

Intel Claims their 7nm EUV Process Tech is On Track

Intel Claims their 7nm EUV Process Tech is On Track 

Intel’s 10nm process tech was initially set to enter mass production in 2016, but after a long string of delays, the technology remains barely utilised by the company, allowing their competitors to catch up and release seemingly equivalent process technology before their 10nm tech could properly hit the market. 

Right now, Intel’s 10nm process tech is set to enter high volume production in mid-late 2019, with the technology’s long-term delays forcing rapid changes to the company’s product roadmap. There is a reason why Intel’s past four generations of core processors use Skylake-based CPU cores, rather than newer microarchitectures. 

10nm was an aggressive node, and this has been to the detriment of Intel, who have confirmed to Anandtech that the company is “going back to more like a 2X scaling factor” for future process nodes and that 7nm “is a largely separate effort” to 10nm. 

Intel remains confident that they can deliver 7nm on schedule, though at this time the company’s planned release timeframe for 7nm remains unknown. 7nm has been developed by a different team than 10nm, with the node being set to make extensive use of EUV technology, which will help facilitate the node’s smaller size. 

One potential stumbling block for Intel’s 7nm plans is the availability of EUV machines, as the 2x scaling goal of 7nm will require a large number of these cutting-edge machines. ASML is the only company that manufactures these machines at this time, with both Samsung and TSMC also hoping to get a good supply of the company’s EUV tech. Overuse of EUV could prove detrimental for next-generation nodes, as the supply of EUV machines is extremely limited and this supply could limit the manufacturing capacity of future process nodes. 
  

Intel Claims their 7nm EUV Process Tech is On Track

At this time it is unknown when Intel plans to start utilising their 7nm process tech, as the company has not released their current foundry roadmap. If Intel can move back to their bi-yearly process shrink schedule, we could expect 7nm in 2021 (assuming 10nm releases in 2019), though the process node could come much later. 

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