Intel Takes on TSMC and Samsung: Unveils 7 New Lithographic Processes in just 3 Years - Can Anyone Stop Them?

Intel Takes on TSMC and Samsung: Unveils 7 New Lithographic Processes in just 3 Years – Can Anyone Stop Them?

Cellular Stockpile Tech Articles Leave a Comment

Intel ataca desde todos los frentes a TSMC y Samsung: 7 nuevos procesos litográficos en solo 3 años, ¿quién va a pararles?

Intel has just pulled off an “All In” move with its Intel Foundry Direct Connect 2024 event, which not only featured significant interviews and details, but will also generate discussions in the coming days. The information, key players, and statements of intent are of such a caliber that it will take us several hours to cover them. Still, for now, let’s touch on the most critical aspect: the lithographic processes. If you thought a strategy of 5 nodes in 4 years was impossible, brace yourself because Intel is preparing 7 nodes in 3 years with both next-generation and mature lithographic processes. Who’s going to stop them?

This is a blow to all of their rivals from all possible fronts: past, present, and future. Three types of nodes, three years, and seven lithographic processes in total—an unprecedented move for Intel, which is opening its FAB to any chip design company that wants to work with any market node, be it top, competitive, or simply profitable.

Intel Foundry Direct Connect 2024: 7 Different Lithographic Processes in 3 Years

Intel is not alone in this endeavor. The company’s goal is massive, but it has shown it’s fulfilling its promises, and this year will debut Intel 18A as promised, completing the task of launching five nodes in four years.

It seems like yesterday, but this 2024 event marks the end of that stage and the beginning of a new one. This new stage is represented in the four different scenarios that are divided into lithographic processes, which in turn signify four market segments:

Intel 14A -> This is Intel’s latest technology, representing the cutting edge supported by ASML’s new EUV High-NA scanners at a cost of $380 million per scanner. These scanners are expected to arrive in 2026, but engineering samples could be released to certain customers and used for their processors as early as late 2025.

There will, however, be an evolved variant of the main process known as Intel 14A-E, which should be a similar concept to the previous Intel 14A+ for reference.

Intel 18A -> The calendar moves forward, and its release date draws nearer. Intel has reiterated that Clearwater Forest and Panther Lake are ready and the node will enter mass production shortly (for the former). However, it will not stop there, as it will also have a variant known as Intel 18A-P aimed at performance enhancement.

The First Node in History Focused on AI

No one can deny that AI is changing everything, including lithographic nodes. In just a month and a half, Intel will launch Granite Rapids and Sierra Forest as architectures with new Xeon processors, using EUV technology for the first time. This is where Intel 3, a lithographic node we’ve discussed quite a bit, comes in.

Intel 3-T -> Not only will the Intel 3 node arrive in 2024, but Intel will also enhance it with what they’ve called Intel 3-T. This means Intel 3 will be reworked into a lithographic process compatible with 3D stacking, as was partially done with Intel 4, but focused on AI and the most advanced chips requiring high-density and high-performance 3D design.

Following that, in 2025, Intel will launch an improvement to the original Intel 3, known as Intel 3-E. This will be an extension of extra features, with another innovation derived from the original node called Intel 3-PT arriving in 2026. This will basically be an Intel 3-T with performance enhancements.

Mature Nodes -> Intel aims to take on TSMC and Samsung in a final push. Intel 7, which is about to leave the market and is officially considered a mature node (with Raptor Lake Refresh just becoming the architecture with the shortest-lived top node in the market), will be joined by another naming change: Intel 16. This node will have an Intel 16-E variant with extra features and should be available to the automotive sector and other related industries.

Tower Semiconductor and UMC Enter the Scene

The story doesn’t end here, as Intel will also partner with Tower Semiconductor to launch an extra mature 65nm node aimed at companies seeking very cheap, simple chips in large production volumes. Additionally, in collaboration with UMC, Intel will launch Intel 12, a node arriving in 2025 as the direct successor to Intel 16, to compete in the same segment but advance against TSMC and Samsung options.

Thus, Intel will launch six of its nodes in three years, plus one in partnership with Tower and another co-developed with UMC, which could be considered the seventh in question. Can TSMC and Samsung compete with this strategy alone by 2027? We don’t know, but Intel’s goal is to become the world’s second-largest manufacturer by 2030, and their new roadmap is the first step towards achieving this.

Need Help?

Can't Find What Your Looking For? Just fill out our form and we'll ask our trusted distributors

Contact Cellular Stockpile.

Wholesale Inquiries Only.

Email Cellular Stockpile
Tel: | Whatsapp:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *