Samsung 3nm Mass Production
In the semiconductor field, after the 5nm process, what is the process? According to the current timeline, it should be 4nm, and then next year’s mass production of 3nm. 4nm is a further improvement of 5nm, the advantage is that the performance and power consumption continue to optimize, and while the design is compatible with each other, customers can get the new process at almost the same cost.
And 3nm is the real iteration of the 5nm upgrade, TSMC and Samsung are currently preparing for the advanced process. At the end of June, Samsung announced its 3nm process technology has been officially streamed, using GAA architecture (Gate-All-Around), claiming better performance than TSMC’s 3nm FinFET architecture.
In addition, the design flexibility of GAA is highly advantageous for Design Technology Co-Optimization (DTCO),1 which helps boost Power, Performance, Area (PPA) benefits. Compared to the 5nm process, the first-generation 3nm process can reduce power consumption by up to 45%, improve performance by 23% and reduce the area by 16% compared to 5nm, while the second-generation 3nm process is to reduce power consumption by up to 50%, improve performance by 30% and reduce the area by 35%.Said, Samsung.
Samsung said that the 3nm process flow progress is done in cooperation with Synopsys, in terms of technical performance, the GAA architecture transistors can provide better electrostatic characteristics than FinFET, and can meet the needs of certain gate widths. For example, in the same size structure, GAA’s channel control is enhanced, thus giving the possibility of further size miniaturization.
In this aspect of the debate, Samsung 3nm has not been the final mass production installation, GAA does not see more than FinFET. After all, only Samsung’s side of the story, who will not say that their melon is not sweet.
Time, since it has been flowing, then from Samsung 3nm mass production is streamed, while TSMC, on the other hand, is scheduled for risky trial production of 3nm in the second half of this year, 2022 into large-scale mass production.
However, becoming the first company to reach this milestone ahead of TSMC and seemingly leading the race for advanced chips, Samsung’s main initial 3nm customers are cryptocurrency miners on the mainland, and long-term order visibility is questionable.
The industry insider Mobile phone chip expert’s report points out that when Samsung announced the start of mass production of 3-nanometer chips on June 30, it did not disclose the list of customers for 3-nanometer chips, saying only that these chips will initially be used for “high-performance computing applications”.
A source in the South Korean financial district of Yeouido asked, “Who are the customers?” “Who is the customer” is more evidence of technical power, especially the first shipping object. Suppliers and sources revealed that Samsung’s first customers for 3nm include mainland cryptocurrency miners, but with the recent collapse in cryptocurrency values, these customers may not be able to rely on it in the long run.
In addition, Samsung is not mass-producing 3-nanometer chips at its Pyeongtaek plant, where the latest manufacturing equipment is installed, but at its Hwaseong plant, where the manufacturing technology is being developed, leading observers to speculate that the scale of mass production is small.Said, Mobile Phone Chip Expert.