During the company's second-quarter earnings call, TSMC Co-CEO Mark Liu shed some light about the company's plans for the implementation of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography.
TSMC says it's using 7nm as a development vehicle for EUV and that the foundry expects it will fully implement EUV on the 5nm node by the end of this decade. Liu promised that EUV will help to improve density, simplify process complexity and reduce cost.
The company said it has been using 7nm as a development vehicle for EUV, achieving what it called good integration of EUV scanners, masks and photoresist. TSMC said it is running four state-of-the-art EUV scanners for infrastructure development and will move in another two NXE:3400 EUV production tools from ASML in the first quarter of 2017.
TSMC said it has implemented a 125 watt EUV source in its ASML NXE:3350 equipment to improve productivity. In the meantime, the company has also developed in-house EUV mask, material, inspection and repair technology to integrate its EUV lithography.
The first revenue from 10nm is expected in Q1 2017 and TSMC said it expects 10nm "to ramp steeply throughout next year." TSMC has taped out three customers products on the 10nm node and described the yields as "satisfactory".
TSMC also shared promising news about its 7nm node, claiming yield improvement on a 256Mb SRAM test device is "ahead of schedule".
“We believe our 7nm power, performance and area density (PPA) is ahead of our competitors,” Liu said. TSMC’s mobile and high-performance computing customers “all have aggressive product tape out plans in the first half of 2017 with volume production planned in early 2018,” he added.