Samsung starts chip production on 7nm process with euv

Oct

18

2018

Samsung started with the production of chips on its 7nm low power plus process , partly using euv. Samsung says in 2020 to have capacity for customers who need a lot of chips.

The start of production on the 7nm process with euv has proceeded according to schedule. In September last year, Samsung said it would start on the new process in the second half of 2018. Samsung has not yet announced which chips it will make on its new process. The manufacturer not only makes his own chips for smartphones, but also produces for others.

Probably Samsung uses the process for its upcoming high-end soc for smartphones that will be released in 2019. Qualcomm announced early this year that it will have its future Snapdragon-socs with 5g-modem manufactured by Samsung on the 7nm process with euv. According to AnandTech , Samsung can produce 1500 wafers per day per machine. Samsung uses the Twins Scan NXE: 3400B machines from ASML .

Samsung has started the 7nm-euv production in its S3 Fab in the South Korean city of Hwaseong. Although the production has started, according to Samsung it will take until 2020 before there is enough capacity for customers who want to make chips in large volumes. By that time a new production line must be ready.

It is the first process that actually goes into production for which euv is used. Chipmakers are working on the switch to euv lithography as a replacement for immersion lithography. Euv production uses extreme ultraviolet light with a wavelength of 13.5 nm, making small structures possible. Immersion lithography works with light with a wavelength of 193nm.

Competitor TSMC has already started its 7nm production in April , but is not using eu for that yet. For example the Kirin 980-socs from Huawei and the A12-socs from Apple are made on the 7nm process of TSMC. TSMC is also working on the switch to euv. GlobalFoundries also had similar plans, but announced in August that it was stopping the development of its 7nm process.

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