Intel's process to hit 5nm by 2015?

Subject: General Tech | December 6, 2012 - 03:44 PM |
Tagged: Intel

DigiTimes reports that Intel continues to successfully shrink their process, with 14nm on schedule for about 12 months from now and aggressive shrinkage over the following years with 5nm being the plan for 2015.  This is in line with GLOBAL FOUNDRIES who plan to have 14nm FinFET ready at about the same time and well ahead of both Samsung and TSMC.  If that isn't far reaching enough for you, they plan to move to 18" wafers in 2017.

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"At the end of 2013, Intel will enter the generation of 14nm CPUs (P1272) and SoCs (1273), while expanding its investments at its D1X Fab in Oregon, and Fab 42 in Arizona, the US and Fab 24 in Ireland, and will gradually enter 10nm, 7nm and 5nm process generations starting 2015."

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Source: DigiTimes

December 6, 2012 | 05:01 PM - Posted by Shambles (not verified)

5nm? It clearly says 10nm in 2015, and that's if everything proceeds as planned which takes no small amount of faith.

December 6, 2012 | 05:25 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

By 2017, Intel's market share would be shrunk by the ARM process.

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December 6, 2012 | 05:40 PM - Posted by razor512

At 10nm, how would we cool a CPU with such a high thermal density?

December 6, 2012 | 06:52 PM - Posted by collie (not verified)

hate to be "that guy" but is 5nm even posible? a space 5nm squared can only contain about 20 atoms.

December 7, 2012 | 07:32 AM - Posted by JSL

5nm^2 isnt the total area of space that is taken up for the entire chip 5nm is the size of a single transistor, interconnects, and every other such component etched/printed into the substrate. The total size will be much greater than 5nm^2.

EG: i7 3770K is 22nm process, and has a die size of 160mm2 total (with all its various components)... again.. thats 160 millimeters squared. Thats quite a bit more than 22nm^2/core

you're not "That Guy", rather you just made a silly error.

December 8, 2012 | 05:01 PM - Posted by Czechery (not verified)

I got the impression he knows that, he's questioning whether with current tech you can make a silicon transistor in 20 atoms, not the whole chip obviously. Obviously Intel think they can, but its still a phenominal thought that you can make a transistor that small.

December 11, 2012 | 12:37 AM - Posted by collie (not verified)

Thank you. I was actually rather angered that anyone could assume that someone who comes to this site would not understand that the processors we all know and love, handle, install, overclock, and in true nerd fashion talk about for hours, would not understand that a 22nm process chip is not 22nm large. The thing that makes me wonder is the simple physics of the idea. What form of light wave could possibly "Stamp" a 5nm transistor on silicon? Intel is already breaking my understanding of light by somehow breaking down light to smaller waves......somehow to make the current generation of 22nm parts, how in the world are they gonna shrink that down to affect silicon at the near atomic level. I know they are gonna pull it off....somehow but it blows the mind.

December 7, 2012 | 09:36 AM - Posted by YTech2 (not verified)

Issue I may see from this foreseen reduction, is lifespan. Present time, I haven't seen any CPU fail for at least a lifespan of 10 years. Other failures were usually caused by users or poor hardware (bad voltage/current, broken pins, etc.).

That said, we may have to purchase new CPU every year if they're running 24/7. I doubt the cost will be reduced. Look at North American mobile phone. Very compact, and begins to degrade after 1 year of service and each new model is more expensive then the previous.

Perhaps by then, they will have other added technology to increase it's lifespan. (ref. Terminator II)

- YTech

December 11, 2012 | 01:06 AM - Posted by collie (not verified)

Another great point. At 5nm electrons will have actualy have friction to deal with.

December 7, 2012 | 10:42 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Let us see how much heat, all the densely packed circuitry will generate, that needs to be dissipated through so few atoms! Will these circuts be overclockable with their heat transference budget so limited!

December 10, 2012 | 12:22 PM - Posted by Cobra Rob (not verified)

I like how all of these predictions come out yet NO answer on how it's going to be done. The equipment manufactures do not have solutions yet for that size geometry. The 450mm tools are even still in VERY early development stages.

Intel can say they are going to do whatever they want but if they can't buy the equipment to do it, it does not happen.

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