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AMD starts 90nm Opteron manufacturing in Germany

Posted: 22 Apr 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:advanced micro devices? silicon-on-insulator? soi? 90nm? wafer?

Advanced Micro Devices Inc. has begun using a 90nm-based silicon-on-insulator (SOI) manufacturing process at its Fab 30 in Dresden, Germany, according to Thomas Sunderman, a director of manufacturing technology within AMD's corporate manufacturing group.

AMD expects commercial shipments of products made using the 90nm process to begin in the third quarter, Sonderman said.

The move saves about 40 percent of the die area compared with the established 130nm process, and should have a similar impact on AMD's costs until the company introduces 300mm wafer processing, which is expected in early 2006.

The 90nm AMD64 is in active pilot mode in Fab 30 and prototype parts are running in systems, Sonderman said. Sonderman added that strained-silicon would be introduced by AMD in the future.

Although details about the first product to migrate to the 90nm process were not disclosed, a presentation by Sonderman given the day before the Semicon Europa exhibition referred to the AMD64 family of Opteron and Athlon chips and the AMD 64-bit Opteron processor in particular. "There are no plans to migrate the classic Athlon to 90nm," Sonderman confirmed.

Sonderman said the 90nm process would be phased in with all the advanced features acquired during previous generations, including copper interconnect, a Black Diamond low-k technology and as an SOI process with the base wafers provided by Soitec SA.

The combination provides a "significant power saving," Sonderman said, adding that details would be revealed when AMD announces 90nm products.

- Peter Clarke

Silicon Strategies

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