TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company) is the world’s largest dedicated independent semiconductor foundry. To get an idea of its expanse, TSMC is the one that is commissioned to manufacture 3 of the perfect mobile chipsets of 2019 which include Qualcomm Sd 855, Apple A13 Bionic and Huawei HiSilicon Kirin 990. While all 3 of individuals chipsets are produced using a 7 nm process, according to past reports, the independent foundry has presently completed risk productions with 5 nm process.
To put it simply, lower the process number, the higher the number of transistors under a CPU. Correspondingly, the extra transistors under a CPU, the extra strong and energy-efficient it is. For example, the Kirin 990 that options an embedded 5G modem sports an astounding 10.3 billion transistors.
This process number “nm” which is short for nanometers has been shrinking for decades. Back in the 1960s, Intel co-founder Gordon Moore observed that the number of transistors under chips doubled every year. However, in the following decade, it was observed that the number of transistors inside these parts would double every additional year and because then it has been referred to as “Moore’s law”.
Some experts in the past have assumed that the 5 nm node will be the close of Moore’s law. Transistors compact than 7 nm were previously announced to face an obstacle known like quantum tunnelling through the gate oxide layer, but, this does not seem to be the case. Not only has TSMC successfully completed risk handiwork of 5 nm chips, but it is alleged to have started working on fabrication facilities that can churn out 3 nm chips and will be equipped by 2023.
The TSMC facility will cover more than 74 acres of land in southern Taiwan’s Science and Technology Park what will reportedly incur $19.5 billion to build. In addition to TSMC, Samsung, what is one of the largest microchips manufacturers is moreover gearing to deliver chips with a 3 nm node. However, Samsung’s facility will reportedly be operational during 2021-2022 time frame.
Having said that transistor density on Samsung chips won’t be as high like TSMC’s 3 nm process. This means that Samsung made microchips at that node won’t pack like numerous transistors into a small space as TSMC’s.
Talking about the present scenario, Qualcomm’s up coming chip, the Snapdragon 865 which is coming to first public appearance in the following months will be made using 7 nm process. Even though its successor, the Snapdragon 875 and Apple’s A14, both of which will launch next year will be made using 5 nm process.