Samsung foundry now mass producing 5nm LPE chips

Posted on Monday, Nov 02 2020 @ 13:54 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
Samsung revealed its foundry business is now shipping mobile SoCs made using the new 5LPE (5nm Low Power Early) process. Tom's Hardware reports Samsung also said it expects to ship more HPC chips in the current quarter, which may be an indication of improved supplies to NVIDIA. Samsung's 5LPE is a further evolution of the company's 7LPP technology, these two nodes are largely design-rule compatible so it's not a fully new technology.
5LPE enhances the use of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography tools when compared to 7LPP in a bid to provide a 10% performance improvement (at the same power and complexity) or a 20% power reduction (at the same clocks and complexity) along with a ~25% area reduction (1.33x transistor density depending on exact transistor structures). 5LPE adds several new modules to the original process, including FinFETs with Smart Diffusion Break (SDB) isolation structure for extra performance, first-gen flexible contact placement (Samsung's tech that's similar to Intel's COAG, contact over active gate) for scaling, and single-fin devices for low-power applications.

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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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