Intel sees few obstacles to five nanometer chips

Mark Bohr, Intel Senior Fellow of Logic Technology Development, talked to the press here at IDF today and said the company is confident that in the future it can produce transistors at the staggeringly small line width of five nanometers.

He also said that 450 millimetre silicon wafers are still about five years away.

Bohr said that Intel is developing two versions of is technology for 22 nanometres and 14 nanometres. The P1270 is a CPU and P1271 Soc, while the 14 nanometre chips are dubbed the P1272 and the P1273.

It’s been several years since Intel staerted looking at materials and structure to continue scaling in accordance with Moore’s Law. Trigate will be used for a cople more generations, he said.  Transistor performance and leakage are still being looked at to improve transistors.

In the last few generations Intel has improved performance and aims to continue reducing leakage. It’s doing that on several fronts for CPUs that range from mobile to server.  Intel will continue to use trigate for 14 nanometres and 10 nanometres too.  At 22 nm, there’s 20 percent better performance on multithreaded applications and 20 percent lower power.  It is swiftly removing defect densities.

There are three fabs producing the 22nm at Oregon, Arizona and in Israel t the end of this year.

The difference between CPUs and SoCs include high speed for CPUs and low leakages for the SoC. Upper level interconnects are high speed, and density respectively.

The goal is to reduce the cost per transistor allied to larger wafer size.

Intel is investing in new fabs for 14 nanometre fabs at Oregon, Arizona and Ireland, for 300mm wafers. Building is well under way. Plans for future technology include 10nm, seven nm, and five nm after 2015. 14nm technology will come towards the end of next year. Bohr also said he already is confident it has the technology answer to

He said that Intel sees no serious obstacles to Moore’s Law over the next 10 years.

Intel would like to move to 450 millimetre wafers soon but Bohr said that we’re unlikely to see it for four or five years. The reason for that is that all players in the industry need to have equipment and other elements in place before it can go ahead.