TSMC accelerates 2nm development – acquires extreme ultraviolet equipment


TSMC

According to Taiwan media reports, TSMC announced that the 3nm process will enter trial production in the first half of next year. In addition, the mass production for this process will commence in the second half of 2022. The latest report shows that TSMC is accelerating the pace of 2nm research and development. Recently, the company purchased two more extreme ultraviolet (EUV) machines.

TSMC

With this sort of investment and purchases, TSMC’s capital expenditure will likely not reduce. If anything, it may be around $16 billion as last year. TSMC is currently the most active fab to introduce extreme ultraviolet lithography equipment to provide OEM mass production services. Also, because TSMC has advanced in FinFET technology, TSMC has introduced extreme ultraviolet light microscopy at 5 nanometers.

TSMC has announced that it will continue to adopt the fin-type field effect transistor architecture for 3 nanometers. Based on this technical architecture, it will move towards 2 nanometers. TSMC previously disclosed in its 2019 annual report that the company has started to develop the 2nm technology while conducting exploratory research on technologies below 2 nanometers.

TSMC to delay the 3nm process

Reports coming in from China indicate that TSMC will have to delay the trial phase of the new 3nm process. According to the original schedule, this phase was t commence in June, however, it will now take place next year. This could be due to the pressure the company is facing with orders of current 7nm and 5nm  chips apart from the pandemic.

According to TSMC’s spokesperson, the company’s current focus is on the 7nm and the latest 5nm processors. However, it is already preparing for the 3nm and 2nm processes. Back in April, the company officially introduced the 3nm process plan. The new process aims to increase the transistor density to 3.6 times more than 7nm. Furthermore, the new 3nm promises to give a 15% and 5% boost in performance compared to the older 7nm and 5nm chips respectively. As of now, the chipmaker has invested about 1.5 trillion Taiwan Dollars for the 3nm process. The company is still keeping the important details of this process under wraps.

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Founded in 1987, TSMC is the world’s largest foundry semiconductor manufacturing plant, and customers include Apple and Qualcomm. Its headquarters is located in the Hsinchu Science Industrial Park in Hsinchu, Taiwan. TSMC shares are listed on the Taiwan Stock Exchange under the stock code of 2330, and American Depository Receipts are listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol TSM. Last Friday, TSMC (NYSE:TSM) shares rose 1.69% to $55.2, with a total market value of approximately $286.271 billion.

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