As you may now, the next big step in chip production for companies like Intel, TSMC, GlobalFoundries and others is the adoption of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography. We've been hearing about this state-of-the-art production technique for many years and after countless delays it's finally getting ready for commercial production.
Earlier today, Dutch semiconductor manufacturing equipment firm ASML announced its 2016 financial results and revealed it took orders for six NXE:3400 Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) systems in the fourth quarter. The company now has a EUV backlog of 18 systems, with a total value of around 2 billion EUR.
"Regarding EUV, we executed on the customer-aligned productivity and availability targets, which gave customers the confidence to place a significant number of orders, leading to an EUV backlog of about EUR 2 billion. These orders show that they are committed to take EUV into production, and we expect that the first customers will start volume manufacturing with EUV at the 7 nanometer logic node and the mid-10 nanometer DRAM node. We are now moving to the next phase of EUV industrialization. We remain committed to deliver the performance requirements for customer volume manufacturing, while continuing to build up our manufacturing, supply chain and service capabilities," Wennink said.
ASML expects to deliver 12 EUV machines in 2017 and claims chip makers will be able to kick off mass production with EUV lithography towards late 2018 or early 2019.