Progress being made with EUV but still a lot of pressure

Posted on Tuesday, May 29 2018 @ 10:19 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
If you're wondering about the current state of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, EE Times has a nice update over here. The site visited the headquarters of Belgian research institute Imec and picked up that experts remain upbeat about EUV's prospects.

A lot of firms are jumping on the technology and pushing things ahead, but there's still a lot of pressure right now. Samsung is expected to be the first foundry to adopt EUV, the South Korean giant intends to put it into production at 7nm before the end of this year. TSMC and GlobalFoundries are not far behind but Intel will wait a bit longer. Imec also revealed that it believes DRAM makers will adopt EUV for their D14+ nodes, probably in 2021.
“In general, I’m not seeing diminishing returns. I’m optimistic for the 3m and 2nm logic nodes and the memory road map. We have enough things in the basket…so designers will see area scale, but they might have to make some changes to their designs,” [An] Steegen[, executive vice president of technology and systems at Imec,] said. As a result, Imec’s core program for chip scaling continues to grow at a 5-10 percent annual rate. “Ten years ago, we were expecting our work in advanced CMOS would level off because of consolidation in industry, but the contrary has been true,” said Imec’s chief executive, Luc Van den Hove, noting the program is expanding with new projects in AI accelerators and DNA storage.
EUV is the next big step in chip production. It's been a 20-year struggle and it arrives just in time as traditional immersion lithography is running against the limits of what's physically possible.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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