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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Intel opens 45nm microprocessor factory

Production of a new generation of microprocessors for PCs, laptops, servers and other computing devices officially began weekend at the inside of Intel Corporation, as the firm unveiled its first high-volume 45 nanometer (nm) factory in Chandler, Arizona.

Intel president and chief executive, Mr. Paul Otellini, while disclosing this said that the factory tagged “Fab 32,” is worth $3 billion, about N361.8 billion, and is intended to use Intel’s innovative 45nm process technology based on Intel’s breakthrough in “reinventing” certain areas of the transistors inside its processors to reduce energy leakage.

“The 45nm transistors use a Hafnium-based high-k material for the gate dielectric and metal materials for the gate, and are so small that more than 2 million can fit on the period at the end of this sentence,” he said.

Millions of these tiny transistors, he said, would make up Intel’s products faster, more energy efficient lead and halogen-free processors for Personal Computers (PCs), laptops and servers, as well as ultra low-power processors for mobile Internet and consumer electronic devices, and low-cost PCs.

According to him, the first of the company’s 45nm processors has been scheduled for introduction into the market by the second week of next month and precisely November 12.

“The opening of Fab 32 in Arizona is a testament to Intel’s continued investment in our most strategic asset; the most advanced, environmentally friendly manufacturing network in the world,” he asserted, stressing that the magic of 45nm and new transistor design is to allow for delivery of high-performance, energy-efficient processors to customers globally.

In addition, he said, that Fab 32 is Intel’s sixth 300mm wafer factory and its second factory to produce 45nm chips.

Champion Infotel recalls that Intel first produced 45nm processors in its Oregon development facility, called D1D, in January and is now moving into high-volume production with the opening of Fab 32.

Two additional 45nm, 300mm factories are scheduled to open next year in Kiryat Gat, Israel (Fab 28) and Rio Rancho, N.M. (Fab 11x).

Using 300mm wafers, Mr. Otellini pointed out lowers the production cost per chip while diminishing overall use of resources.

“With 184,000 square feet of clean room space, the completed Fab 32 structure measures 1 million square feet, so large that more than 17 United States football fields could fit inside the building,” he declared.

Adding that more than 1,000 employees will operate the factory in such positions as process, automation and yield engineers and senior manufacturing technicians.

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