Seven billion dollars.

That’s the amount that Intel is going to spend in the US alone on bringing up its 32nm manufacturing process in 2009 and 2010.

These are the fabs Intel is converting to 32nm:

In Oregon Intel has the D1D fab which is already producing 32nm parts, and D1C which is scheduled to start 32nm production at the end of this year. Then two fabs in Arizona: Fab 32 and Fab 11X. Both of them come on line in 2010.

By the end of next year the total investment just to enable 32nm production in the US will be approximately eight billion dollars. In a time where all we hear about are bailouts, cutbacks and recession, this is welcome news.

If anything, Intel should have a renewed focus on competition given that its chief competitor finally woke up. That focus is there. The show must go on. 32nm will happen this year. Let’s talk about how.

The Manufacturing Roadmap
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  • Calin - Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - link

    [quote]but at 45nm Intel’s switched from a SiO2 gate dielectric to a high-k one using Halfnium[/quote]

    It's Hafnium (even if halfnium sounds better)
    Reply
  • aapocketz - Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - link

    hafnium is great for dielectrics. I hope their yields are good since its very expensive. Most CVD processes are only efficient in the single digit %. Reply
  • MrPoletski - Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - link

    doesn't sound as good as unobtanium. Reply
  • melgross - Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - link

    I just don't see how AMD competes, long term. With Intel moving to 32nm faster than expected, and with mainstream parts, that would put them 18 months ahead of AMD, unless somehow, they manage to pull off a similar coup. But it doesn't look as though they will be able to.

    We might remember that a bit over a year ago, AMD stated quite boldly, that they would move to within 6 months of Intel's process changes, but they are still a year behind. No progress there. Unless they can manage to switch around their roadmap the way Intel seems to be able to do, they will fall further behind.
    Reply
  • LordanSS - Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - link

    I think we should wait and see how things will turn out. Now that AMD has spun off their fabs to a separate company, it's no longer their (AMD) job to invest on new manufacturing processes.

    Hopefully, now that the Foundry company has more "freedom", and injection of capital from sources outside of AMD, it'll be able to increase the pace of the shrinking processes.

    Besides all that, doesn't AMD graphics division make use of TSMC's fabs to make their chips?
    Reply
  • PrinceGaz - Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - link

    TSMC's fabs will always be a generation or so behind the like of Intel's own, just as AMD (with IBM's assistance) were ahead of them in the past.

    I can't see AMDs fab company getting much outside investment in the current economic climate -- new state-of-the-art fab facilities are too expensive and there is no guarantee of profitable contracts to keep them busy. The Foundry Company is never going to catch up with Intel unless a miracle happens, and TSMC etc will likely be direct competitors.

    Intel are speeding up their fab and process development because they have money in the bank and continued profits to fuel it. AMD are in dire-straits financially and making a loss. Even with the risks hedge-fund managers take, they'd be mad to put money into AMD just now.
    Reply
  • Triple Omega - Sunday, February 15, 2009 - link

    I wouldn't count AMD out just yet if I were you. One false move from Intel and an unexpected innovation from AMD and they're back on their feet. If in Q4 2007 you said Ati would level the playing field with Nvidia the following year most would call you crazy, yet it still happened. So I still have hopes for AMD. Reply
  • ucsdmike - Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - link

    AMD's staff will be hitting the bar tomorrow.

    This is amazing news from Intel. It is an exciting move.

    Looking forward to cooler and longer running laptops in the near future.
    Reply
  • icecold101 - Monday, August 24, 2009 - link

    AMD still has one thing that intel dosent have... low prices. these new cores will cost more than $1000! In the slumping economy it isn't the best time to ask for top dollar. Reply
  • Ryun - Thursday, February 12, 2009 - link

    More reason to work extra hard maybe?

    In all seriousness, I have a feeling AMD might pull a rabbit out of it's hat like ATi did with the 4 series with their new architecture. Actually, technically they did with Phenom II but really it was just too late in the game to make the significant dent that ATi's 4 series did (though I'd say the triple cores this round are a big win).

    At any rate, 2011 (Bulldozer, or whatever they're calling it now) better be huge. The 65nm X2s were somewhat competitive with Conroe, but after that it just started going downhill. If Bulldozer doesn't do it I don't think AMD is going to be able to get back up. =(
    Reply

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