Intel provided an update regarding its upcoming fabrication technologies at its 2019 Investor Meeting. The company is on track to produce server-class products using its 10 nm manufacturing technology already in the first half of 2020, which is something that the company implied on for a while now, but never confirmed officially. What is relatively surprising is that Intel intends to start production of ccommercial chips using its 7 nm process already in 2021.

Intel’s 7 nm production technology had been in development independently from the 10 nm process and by a different crew, so this one is closer than one might think. The node is set to use extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUVL) with laser wavelength of 13.5 nm for select layers, so it will not heavily rely on multipatterning, a major source of problems with Intel’s 10 nm process. In fact, the use of EUV will simplify development of products, make it easier to produce them, and will likely shorten production cycle times too.

The first product to use Intel's 7 nm process technology will be Intel's Xe-architecture-based GP-GPU in 2021. The GPU will not only be made using Intel’s most advanced node, but will also us Intel’s Intel’s Embedded Die Interconnect Bridge (EMIB) technology as well as Foveros silicon stacking technique, which confirms that the product is not a monolithic design.

Speaking of non-monolithic designs, it is noteworthy that Intel considers its innovative chip packaging technologies no less important than its new nodes, so expect things like EMIB and Foveros to be a big part of Intel's future.

While Intel's first 7 nm product will be launched in 2021, Intel stresses that high-volume manufacturing (HVM) using the technology will begin in 2022 when the technology will be used not only for a server GPU, but also a server CPU. So, expect more 7 nm products three or four years down the road.

Late last year Intel announced a major plan to upgrade a number of its fabs for next-generation process technologies. Officially, Intel is equipping its Fab 42 in Arizona to make chips using its 7 nm fabrication process. Meanwhile, given the scope of Intel’s upgrade plan, which includes fabs in Oregon, Ireland, and Israel, it looks like the company might have other fabs ready for 7 nm by 2021 - 2022 timeframe.

Meanwhile, as Intel intends to refine all of its fabrication processes in the same manner as it did with its 14 nm node, expect Intel's 10 nm to co-exist with 7 nm for years.

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Source: Intel

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  • Korguz - Wednesday, May 8, 2019 - link

    of course you forgot.. cause maybe it doesnt exist ?? HStewart.. just face it.. intel isnt the leader it once was.. its be hind on just about everything now.. you keep bending and twisting things just to make intel look better then it is.. cause you are just a fanboy.. as you said to eva02langley " No I just don't wear AMD dark shades that make you blind to seeing the future besides AMD propaganda " the funny thing is.. you do the EXACT same thing when it comes to intel.. before you accuse some one of doing that.. you REALLY need to see that you do the same thing.. if you were really an optimist.. then you would be able to admit, that intel has screwed up the last few years.. but yet you CAN'T
  • Irata - Thursday, May 9, 2019 - link

    I think saying that you are a "selective optimist" is imho probably closer to the truth. A bit like people seeing their favorite sports team winning the next trophy simply because it's always been their favorite team.

    That is fine though - to each their own.
  • name99 - Wednesday, May 8, 2019 - link

    So, 10m was too aggressive and the way to fix that is claim that you'll do an ADDITIONAL 2.4x density improvement with 7nm?

    What EXACTLY did they learn from 10nm? Because it doesn't appear to be "STFU until you KNOW the process works". And it doesn't appear to be "make small improvements to the process every year instead of trying to change everything all at once for a massive density boost".
  • blu42 - Thursday, May 9, 2019 - link

    It's the good-old 'double-or-nothing' desperate gambler tactics.
  • eva02langley - Wednesday, May 8, 2019 - link

    7nm node in 2021... I will believe it when I will see it.

    By that time, AMD will be on 5nm.
  • smilingcrow - Wednesday, May 8, 2019 - link

    I have more faith in TSMC's 5nm right now but it will be interesting to see how the two compete.
    Much too early to say really.
  • brakdoo - Wednesday, May 8, 2019 - link

    TSMC 5 nm is in risk production. They don't do that unless they reach a reasonable yield. Next year Apple and Huawei seems very likely.

    2021 would probably be a half node advanced in mass production, like N5+ or N4.
  • brakdoo - Wednesday, May 8, 2019 - link

    The real race is about gate-all-around replacing FinFets and delivering much higher performance, not just power and area optimization. That would probably be TSMC and Samsungs 3nm...
  • tipoo - Wednesday, May 8, 2019 - link

    The latest density estimate they showed had 10nm tied with TSMC 7nm, so AMD being on 5nm vs Intel 7nm would be pretty comparable.
  • Hifihedgehog - Wednesday, May 8, 2019 - link

    > 7nm in 2021

    Haha... I'll believe it when I see it. They've said this countless times before. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

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