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IBM gathering its 32 nm partners

IBM and BASF team up for production research

June 22, 2007 - IBM and BASF have entered into an agreement to jointly develop electronic materials required in the production process of 32 nm chips. The technology as well as its related chemicals and materials are expected to be commercialized by major companies in the semiconductor industry in North America, Asia, and Europe in 2010.

Chemistry will increasingly play an important role in the development of the next generation IC products, said Dr. Ronald D. Goldblatt, Distinguished Engineer and Senior Manager, IBM Research.

IBM's latest 45 nm chip technology will be introduced at the end of this year. However, the ongoing development towards smaller minimum feature sizes is already starting to generate major challenges for materials and chemicals.


IBM's 300 mm manufacturing facility in East Fishkill, NY [IBM] Last month, IBM extended its partnership with Chartered, Samsung, Infineon, and Freescale to 32 nm manufacturing, building on earlier joint development and manufacturing agreements at 90 nm, 65 nm, and 45 nm.

IBM, Chartered, and Samsung, as Common Platform technology manufacturers, will be able to use the jointly developed 32 nm process technology and design kits to synchronize their manufacturing facilities. This helps facilitate the flexibility to produce nearly identical chips for their respective high-volume OEM clients, who require a multi-sourcing model and expect early access to process technology.

The five companies will work together to deliver technology for high-performance and low-standby power products through:

  • a focus on low cost and minimum complexity while retaining performance leadership,
  • implementation of new materials such as high-k/metal gate, advanced stress engineering, and extreme low-k films in the Back-End-Of-Line (BEOL),
  • immersion lithography to achieve competitive density and chip size,
  • a focus on quality analog models for the digital communications marketplace,
  • providing a platform for derivative technologies such as RF CMOS and embedded DRAM (eDRAM).

In addition, by using common manufacturing electrical specifications across manufacturing platform partners, technologies can more easily be transferred between partner facilities.

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