In the past few years, TSMC has been leading all the way in semiconductor technology. The only one who can catch up to them in terms of process is Samsung, but the quality of the latter’s craftsmanship has been questioned a lot of times.
At the IEEE ISSCC International Solid-State Circuits Conference, Samsung (to be precise, Samsung Foundry) demonstrated for the first time a chip manufactured with a 3nm process, which is a 256Gb (32GB) SRAM memory chip, which is also the first step in the tradition of the new process.
On the Samsung roadmap, 14nm, 10nm, 7nm, and 3nm are all new process nodes, while others are upgraded and improved, including 11/8/6/5/4nm and so on.
Samsung will apply GAAFET (surround gate field effect transistor) technology for the first time on the 3nm process , once again achieving a breakthrough in the transistor structure, which is a big leap from the current FinFET three-dimensional transistor.
GAAFET technology is divided into two types, one is conventional GAAFET , which uses nanowires as the fin of the transistor, and the other is MBCFET (multi-bridge channel field effect transistor), which uses thicker and wider fins. It is a nanosheet.
Samsung’s first 3nm SRAM chip uses MBCFET with a capacity of 256Gb and an area of ??56 square millimeters. The achievement of Samsung here is its ultra-low power consumption. The voltage only needs to be 0.23V, thanks to the various power savings of MBCFET technology.
According to Samsung, compared to its 7LPP , the 3GAE process can increase transistor density by up to 80%, increase performance by up to 30%, or reduce power consumption by up to 50%.
Perhaps this will allow Samsung to better control chip power consumption and heat generation, and avoid the so-called “rollover”.
Samsung 3nm is expected to be put into mass production next year , but they have not announced yet which companies might use this process in their upcoming smartphones!
As for TSMC, their 3nm continues to use FinFET technology, which claims to increase the density of 5nm transistors by 70%, increase performance by 11%, or reduce power consumption by 27%. It is expected to be put into trial production later this year and mass production next year. Customers include Apple, AMD, NVIDIA, MediaTek, Xilinx, Broadcom, Qualcomm, etc., and even Intel is said to use it.
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