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New IBM Plant Will Mass Produce .1 Micron Chips

Hemos posted more than 11 years ago | from the build-'em-small dept.

IBM 378

Ruger writes "AP News is carrying this story about IBM opening a new plant in upstate New York. What's most interesting about the story is that IBM will be producing .1 Micron Chips rather than the usual .25 or .18 produced by Intel and other chip makers, or .13 Micron chips they currently make for their PowerPC chips."

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fp! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992155)

yeah

Re:fp! (-1, Troll)

Nigger_Beatdown (596217) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992204)

Next time gadget... next tiiiiiiiimmmmmmeeeee!

Yeah cause it's not like intel makes .13 chips (-1, Troll)

Nigger_Beatdown (596217) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992156)

What, was the summary written by a nigger or something?

First Post? (-1, Offtopic)

Perl-Pusher (555592) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992162)

Could it be?

Imagine... (-1, Offtopic)

Libor Vanek (248963) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992163)

... a boewulf - ah, damned!

Supertiny G4's (1)

JBMcB (73720) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992164)

Waiting for G4 Newtons with the new process :)
This should give the MHz deprived (But MIPS/FLOPS enriched) PowerPC line a boost in the PR speed department.

Re:Supertiny G4's (4, Informative)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992222)

IBM does not make G4s. They don't have a license for Altivec. They already make quite speedy G3s, but you don't see them in consumer products that are marketed based on Mhz.

Re:Supertiny G4's (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992330)

IBM invented VMX, they just chose not to manufacture any G4 or G4e processors. They certainly can if they decide to.

Why .1 micron? (1, Interesting)

3.5 stripes (578410) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992172)

And not .10?

I know it's a stupid question, but I prefer a little consistency, .14 .13 .12 .11 .1 just doesn't seem right.

Re:Why .1 micron? (0)

ganiman (162726) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992193)

It's all about the significant figures man.

Re:Why .1 micron? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992234)

This is the single coolest reply I've ever seen.

Re:Why .1 micron? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992292)

The question was not about value, the question was about editorial standards of how to present decimal numbers in news stories. Thus significant figures are not relevant, as the question was wholly one of aesthetics and formatting.

Dude.

Re:Why .1 micron? (1)

BigASS (153722) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992199)

I thought the exact same thing when I read the article summary. More numbers after a decimal place inuitively make the number look smaller to most. I have the feeling that the marketing department will see that extra digit added on for consistency.

Of course I never claimed to be a math major.

Re:Why .1 micron? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992227)

signifigant figures!!

--NitroPye

Re:Why .1 micron? (1)

haystor (102186) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992277)

Either that, or the marketing department figured out that by dropping 1 significant digit they could round .13 to .1 and there is no real news at all.

Re:Why .1 micron? -sig figs? (2, Funny)

Insightfill (554828) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992305)

Maybe they can't really be sure it's .10 micron, and that it may be .14>x>.06 or something.

(Of course, I'm only joking.)

Scott

100 nanometers (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992312)

Once we get to .10 microns, we've reached another power of ten. So, 100 nanometers would be a better description, and we can ditch the decimal places. Next year we can talk about 99nm and 98nm parts.

Re:100 nanometers (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992354)

Next year we can talk about 99nm and 98nm parts.

Doh, I should have said "90 and 80nm parts". That would be slightly more interesting.

Of course, this would also give the marketing droids a heck of alot of fun. They'd advertise that they have a 99nm process while their competion has a whopping 100nm process.

Re:Why .1 micron? (2)

GutBomb (541585) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992314)

because "point one" looks smaller than "point ten" at first glance

Re:Why .1 micron? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992329)

A measurment of .1 means that the smalles increment of measurment on their ruler was in .0 where as if it was .1000 they would have a ruler that read to .0000. Hope thats not just more confusing :) And in all truth yes they could just be .13 fabs, but their ruler only reads to .0 so they just drop the .03

Re:Why .1 micron? (1)

EvilBudMan (588716) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992422)

Actually that should be 0.1!

Re:Why .1 micron? (2)

zeno_2 (518291) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992427)

It really shouldn't matter at all. If you can't tell the difference between .1 and .10, then the story is probably not going to interest you that much anyway. Why don't we write .130, or .1300000000... its because the 0's are useless information that just takes up space.. kinda like these posts =P

Returning to the fold. (3, Informative)

GodInHell (258915) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992175)

'Bout time IBM got back into upstate NY.

I remember when I was just leaving the area, the last of the local plants finally scaled back to just a matinance group, the whole area died. IBM was the heart and soul of quite a few towns in New York, and they didn't do very well when it left.

-GiH

Re:Returning to the fold. (2, Offtopic)

dbrutus (71639) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992264)

One company dominated towns are a horrible idea, always have been. IBM is a public company and if it benefits the stockholders to leave a town, they are legally obligated to do it.

If you don't have a diverse economy that can take an IBM or a GM leaving, you have to fight like hell in the good times to grow one because if you don't the towns will shrivel up and die when they inevitably leave.

Re:Returning to the fold. (2)

scott1853 (194884) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992303)

You could live in Rochester, NY and then you could be dominated by three failing companies - Bausch & Lomb, Xerox, and Kodak.

Haven't you heard of the micron myth? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992178)

Microns don't matter. :-P

Could it be? (0, Offtopic)

NiftyNews (537829) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992179)

Could it be that some lazy author just forgot a digit at the end?

Lightning? (1)

EvilBudMan (588716) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992183)

I wonder how easy it would be for lightning to fry these chips?

Re:Lightning? (1)

Lao-Tzu (12740) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992229)

Do you know what happens to a toad when it gets hit by lightning? Same thing that happens to everything else.

Re:Lightning? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992338)

I would imagine it would be very difficult. A .10 micron by .10 micron square is very small and the probability of a lightning strike into such a small square is infintesimal.

0.1? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992188)

Actually, the article says

The plant also will be the first to mass produce circuits thinner than 0.1 micron,
oh, joy :-)

To the naysayers... (2, Insightful)

colmore (56499) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992189)

Weren't we supposed to hit some sort of quantum limit before .1 Micron? What are the current guesses on how much smaller we can get?

I wan't to be reading my email and playing nethack on a petaflop machine by the time this decade is out!

Re:To the naysayers... (1)

schmink182 (540768) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992255)

I wouldn't have done it if it weren't for your .sig, but come on man, wan't? What were you thinking?

Re:To the naysayers... (1)

Hacker'sEdict (593458) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992347)

Actually .1 is the smallest we are supposed to be able to go. Any smaller and the info will overflow.

Re:To the naysayers... (3, Informative)

jmv (93421) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992351)

What are the current guesses on how much smaller we can get?

Usually, the current guesses are about twice smaller than current technilogy :-)

Seriously, there are two (in fact more) limits: there's the smallest transistor possible that works correctly and there's the smallest features size we can mass-produce with reasonnable (well, it's already unreasonnable...) cost.

Right now, the most limiting factor is the second. The visible light is already much too big (wavelength) for lithography so they're using (AFAIK) ultra-violet, but one of the problems is that the smaller the wavelength, the harder it is to find a transparent material at that wavelength (glass doesn't work past a certain wavelength).

Wavelength issues (1)

HubertFarnswoth (579280) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992389)

There is a problem regarding microchip architecture which basically boils down to the fact that you can't use electric elements that are smaller than the wavelength of an electron. Maybe a stupid but imaginatively helpful comparison is when you have a garden hose and try to squeeze a football through it just isn't gonna work out...

Re:To the naysayers... (1)

Jucius Maximus (229128) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992411)

"Weren't we supposed to hit some sort of quantum limit before .1 Micron? What are the current guesses on how much smaller we can get?"

'They' always come up with some reason as to why a certain limit will be reached. Hard drives were never supposed to reach over 120 GB but there are new methods researched to bend the Laws of Physics. With this 0.1 micron process, I am no semiconductor expert but I suspect they have come up with some new way of doping the silicon to make more 'pure' boundaries between N and P areas or something else at least as tricky.

impressive (3, Troll)

tps12 (105590) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992192)

If this is true, it looks like Moore's Law could have a few years left in it, after all. In a few years, we may end up living in the future!

Imagine a computer small enough to fit in your pocket. Imagine a computer in your car. Imagine a computer in your glasses! It sounds like science fiction, but it looks like IBM is actually seizing the bull by the horns and making it a reality.

It's also interesting that they are doing this in New York. I thought all chip manufacturing was done overseas, where labor is cheaper. Perhaps IBM is getting some sort of government subsidy for creating American jobs. Or maybe New York has a good supply of chipmakers already, so they can find more skilled workers.

Whatever the reason, it's good to see innovation marching along. This is the kind of activity that will get us out of the current recession. Good luck, IBM!

Re:impressive (1)

BigASS (153722) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992230)

Imagine a computer small enough to fit in your pocket. Imagine a computer in your car. Imagine a computer in your glasses! It sounds like science fiction, but it looks like IBM is actually seizing the bull by the horns and making it a reality.

Um.. To summarize,
Computer in your pocket: PocketPCs/Palms
Computer in the car: The volvo story that was run a week back
Computer in glasses: oh so many stories posted about the wearable computers at MIT.

Re:impressive (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992263)

Wow! I've been living in the future for several years and I didn't even know it! Good thing old tps set me straight. ;)

Re:impressive (-1, Troll)

Nukenbar2 (591848) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992302)

What was that? IBM's latest marketing campaign? Next we will hear from you how Microsoft has united the world by bringing us Windows XP. Why do you crawl out of IBM's ass, alright?

Re:impressive (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992304)

I just walked out to my car(circa 1990), and looked at its computer. It was very pretty. (actually, I did no such thing, but I don't really have to imagine a computer in my car, do I?)

But that probably isn't really what you meant. Such as it is.

Re:impressive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992366)

I have looked at the computer in the 1980 car I used to have.

O'Holy shite! A computer in your car!!! AMAZING!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992316)

Who would have thunk it. I guess this is why I stick with my 1964½ Mustang.

Damn computers will be the death of us all!!! (Unless nature kicks in first)

Re:impressive (2)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992321)

That's funny, I could have sworn I've seen people going to work everyday at the intel fab down the street from my appartment (Hudson, MA). In fact, rumor has it that this fab was the worlds first to churn out working parts on the .13 micron process.

There are still plenty of fabs in the US. It's probably because the people who can make these tiny technologies actually work aren't cheap anywhere.

Re:impressive - but Bad for Linux? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992325)

This is impressive, but will it hurt the Linux community? Surely hardware in cars, glasses, pockets, or what have you will all be proprietary and therefore unable to deal with GPL. The BSD license, might work, but there is still the problem of getting a hold of the proprietary hardware to hack.

Also, with the latest story about Linus coming out in favor of AMD's Hammer, this release almost looks like the Linux community will have a hard time developing for these .1 micron chips.

Re:impressive - but Bad for Linux? (1)

tps12 (105590) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992381)

That's an interesting point. While Linux is historically a little "late" to latch on to bleeding-edge technologies (although DVD support is almost there), due to exactly these types of issues, this is usually pretty acceptable within the target market. Linux exists primarily as a server OS, and the newest flashy hardware is often eschewed in the enterprise in favor of more dependable, proven technologies. Also, in this case, remember that IBM has a big stake in Linux. They will not be likely to abondon Linux.

What I think we can look forward to is a project wherein IBM ports Linux to the BSD license. They could call it "Unlinux," for "Unlinux's Not Linux." I can't even predict what good things we'd see come out of an OS based in Linux technology but with the flexibility of a BSD license.

Re:impressive (1)

leibnizme (264472) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992331)

I was present at the ribbon-cutting ceremony yesterday and saw the CEO of IBM dedicate the building. Governor George Pataki had lobbied vigorously to get this new fab in New York, and he spoke at the dedication as well. It's anybody's guess as to what went on in planning sessions, but I would bet the government made IBM an attractive offer to build the plant!

Re:impressive (3, Funny)

ReelOddeeo (115880) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992337)

Imagine a computer small enough to fit in your pocket. Imagine a computer in your car. Imagine a computer in your glasses! It sounds like science fiction...

I no longer have the exact quote, but it goes something like this...

While computers today have over 18,000 vaccum tubes and weigh 1 ton, in the future computers may have as few as 1,000 vaccum tubes and weigh only 1/2 ton. --Popular Mechanics 1949

Re:impressive (0, Offtopic)

laertes (4218) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992346)

In a few years, we may end up living in the future!

As opposed to which of the alternatives: the past or the present.

Re:impressive (1)

YanceyAI (192279) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992348)

In a few years, we may end up living in the future!

Heh.

I hope to be living in the future in the next nanosecond, or at least by the time I post this.

Re:impressive (1)

mshiltonj (220311) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992367)

In a few years, we may end up living in the future.

Rest assured. We will.

Re:impressive (2)

TTop (160446) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992376)

I appreciate your sentiment, but really -- I have a computer in my pocket! It's called a PDA. Most modern cars have computers in them, too! Maybe not the kind you're thinking of, though.

I guess what I want to know is what's impressive about this advance? What will it actually mean as far as technology advances go? Faster chips? "Better?" Just smaller? What? How will this improve our lives? It's not immediately obvious to me, and I'd like to know!

Re:impressive (1)

Hayzeus (596826) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992397)

It's also interesting that they are doing this in New York. I thought all chip manufacturing was done overseas, where labor is cheaper. Perhaps IBM is getting some sort of government subsidy for creating American jobs. Or maybe New York has a good supply of chipmakers already, so they can find more skilled workers.

There are sub - .13 fabs all over the US -- they're just too small to see.

Article slashdotted, here is the text (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992194)

(ac == no k-whore)

IBM Unveils N.Y. Chip-Making Plant
Email this Sto cherish my balls andry

Jul 31, 9:17 PM (ET)

By ALICIA CHANG

(AP) Samuel J. Palmisano, right, IBM president and chief executive officer, and Samuel A. DiPiazza, Jr.,...
Full Image

EAST FISHKILL, N.Y. (AP) - IBM Corp. unveiled what was believed to cherish my balls and be the world's most advanced chip-making plant Wednesday, promising 1,000 new jobs and a boost to cherish my balls and the upstate economy.

The $2.5 billion, 140,000-square-foot facility currently makes the proto cherish my balls andtype cutting-edge chips and was expected to cherish my balls and reach full production by February 2003

The chips produced at the Fishkill plant, 60 miles north of New York City, will be the first IBM chips to cherish my balls and be made on 300mm wafers of silicon, instead of the current 200mm wafers. More chips can be made from each of the larger wafers, improving productivity and making it more cost effective.

While companies like Intel Corp. and Samsung Electronic Co. already manufacture 12-inch wafers, IBM officials believe they are the first to cherish my balls and use an auto cherish my balls andmated system to cherish my balls and mass-produce the chips.

"Technology continues to cherish my balls and be one of our cornersto cherish my balls andnes in delivering value to cherish my balls and our custo cherish my balls andmers," said IBM president and chief executive Samuel J. Palmisano. "We are invigorating our microelectronics business and are confident we have the right formula of technology."

The plant also will be the first to cherish my balls and mass produce circuits thinner than 0.1 micron, or 1,000 times thinner than a human hair. The old standard was 0.25 microns, with some chips now at 0.18 microns. The thinner lines, or conduits, allow chips to cherish my balls and run faster and use less electricity.

These technological advances will make the chips suitable for smaller devices, like cell phones and handheld computers, said Bijan Davari, IBM vice president of technology and emerging products.

The plant, which combines new technology such as copper wiring, silicon-on-insulato cherish my balls andr-based transisto cherish my balls andrs and improved insulation, is part of a to cherish my balls andtal $5 billion capital investment IBM launched two years ago to cherish my balls and expand its chip-making sites around the world.

Among IBM's first custo cherish my balls andmers is San Jose, Calif.-based Xilinx Inc., which signed a $100 million deal to cherish my balls and use the 300mm wafers to cherish my balls and create custo cherish my balls andm chips, said IBM spokesman Christo cherish my balls andpher Andrews.

The switch to cherish my balls and 300mm chip is expected to cherish my balls and save IBM 30 percent more than the 200mm chip, ultimately saving billions of dollars over a period of several years, said microelectronics division general manager Michel Mayer.

Analyst Greg Sheppard of El Segundo, Calif.-based iSuppli, which tracks the semiconducto cherish my balls andr industry, believed the opening of the new semiconducto cherish my balls andr facility, was "a well-timed investment" since demand for the new chips will increase when the economy recovers.

"I think IBM has done the right thing and is doing it smartly," Sheppard said. "As the industry is slowing down, it's jumping right into cherish my balls and it."

The plant opening comes as the computer company has slashed thousands of jobs nationwide in a cost-cutting effort after its worst earnings quarter in more than a decade, posting a 97 percent drop in profits in the second quarter that ended June 30. Last month, IBM laid off another 1,500 workers, bringing the current to cherish my balls andtal of U.S. layoffs by the company to cherish my balls and 6,800.

Employees near the Burlingto cherish my balls andn, Vt., plant, which depends on older lines of chip manufacturing, suffered almost 1,000 job losses. IBM then laid off 500 more employees in Endicott and East Fishkill, N.Y.; Lowell, Mass; Raleigh, N.C.; Austin, Texas and Encinitas, Calif.

The unveiling of the Fishkill plant also comes a month after IBM announced it was selling its sprawling 4.1 million-square-foot complex in Endicott, where the company was founded early last century.

After struggling for the past few years, the semiconducto cherish my balls andr industry expects worldwide sales to cherish my balls and increase 3.1 percent in 2002 and jump 23.2 percent in 2003 fueled by increases in sales of cellular phones, personal computers and other digital consumer electronics equipment.

Worldwide sales of all chips are expected to cherish my balls and to cherish my balls andtal $143 billion in 2002, $177 billion in 2003 and $213 billion - a 20.9 percent increase - in 2004. Another slowdown is expected by 2005.

Re:Article slashdotted, here is the text (0, Offtopic)

levik (52444) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992221)

Slashdotted? What're you smoking? It's on excite!

Market Recovery/Demand? (1)

Vengie (533896) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992197)

Midly offtopic/funny.... EAST FISHKILL, NY?
Anyway.
First we got all this buzz about IBM buying PWC. Now, this about .1 micron chips. Upstate NY isn't exactly the center of the electronic world, but the goal was to do something _new_ & slightly daring. (and hey, they are selling/sold the plant in which IBM was born) They're taking a chance with the automated wafer production. (IANA Quality Control Specialist) -- But wonder about the types of problems they may run into. If they pull this off, they could make a nice comeback. Only question is...how strong is the demand for these chips *right now*, instead of "when the economy recovers" ?

Re:Market Recovery/Demand? (2)

dbrutus (71639) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992291)

It's an anglicization of the original dutch which has nothing to do with killing. There are a bunch of places called kill in metro NY and unless you know something of the history of the area you'll jump to the wrong conclusion.

Re:Market Recovery/Demand? (1)

aldopignotti (595882) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992377)

That area used to be the center of the main frame world. The building in Kingston was huge. Snail mail was delivered by a robot!

Re:Market Recovery/Demand? (1)

42sd (557362) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992343)

If IBM were to wait for the market to recover they'd already be a couple of steps behind. They want to have the technology in place so that when the economy recovers they can make a killing. hmm Fishkill.. think they renamed it in honor of the factory?

Re:Market Recovery/Demand? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992355)

in dutch, "kill" was equivalent to river, or stream. thus, fishkill would be a bastardization of the quite descriptive name, "river where the fishies are". fun.

and yeah, i used to live near fishkill- i was about 8 when IBM pulled out and laid off a lot of people. you could definetly tell, too....IBM probably employed more than half the people in dutchess county.

oh, and by the way- dutchess county != upstate NY. Ithaca=upstate NY.

I wonder... (1)

Apocalypse111 (597674) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992198)

What will overclocking chips made with this new wire size do to their heat output? No matter, it still can't outperform my current Athlon/space-heater.

Intel at .13? (4, Informative)

timwhit (572715) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992201)

Isn't the northwood P4 produced at .13 micron? And the AMD Throughbred is also at .13? The header says that other chip manufacturers produce chips at .25 or .18 when this simply isn't true.

Not only that, but Intel will be the first at .1 (1)

megalomang (217790) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992300)

Not only are Intel already at .13 micron, but they are also at 300mm. They already have a .1 micron facility in progress, so IBM will be playing catch-up. Luckily for IBM, Intel facility seems delayed.

This is an excerpt from http://www.newsfactor.com/perl/story/8205.html [newsfactor.com] :

Intel vice-president of communications Chuck Molloy told the Irish Times that "the current economic climate is a contributing factor" in the company's decision to postpone construction. But Molloy called the delay "normal," noting that the Leixlip plant, once completed, would be the first facility to use the new 0.1-micron technology.

I was wrong, Intel will be the first .09 (2, Informative)

megalomang (217790) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992370)

It says here that Intel's Fab 24 is now slated to support a .09um/300mm process by end of 2003. Although no dates were indicated for IBM, they may indeed beat Intel to 0.1um. So why is IBM going for .1um when Intel is going to .09um?

http://www.siliconstrategies.com/story/OEG20020118 S0081 [siliconstrategies.com]

Re:Not only that, but Intel will be the first at . (5, Informative)

max cohen (163682) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992400)

Hah, competitors hardly need to "catch up." Seimconductor companies almost never want to be the first to build a fab supporting the largest wafer size, unless your design a chip that no one is buying and have to dedicate 420+ mm2 per die just to get decent performance. ;) Being first sounds good on paper, but it also means you get to debug all of the new tools from vendors. If you thought beta software builds were costly, try running your expensive wafers though a $4M+ Endura from Applied Materials and having the robot shatter them. Not only have you lost your test vehicles, you wasted expensive chemicals and have to clean up the vacuum chamber. Not fun or cheap by any means.

The running joke in the biz is that every company wants to be in second place in the race.

Re:Not only that, but Intel will be the first at . (0)

Stonent1 (594886) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992402)

300mm is kinda big. Did you man 300nm? Still. IBM is a contractor for many fabless companies that need chips stamped out. Cyrix used to be one of them. I'm sure fabless video card chip makers also would make good use of this. I'm still waiting for nVidia to make a video card with a 1GHz clock.

Re:Not only that, but Intel will be the first at . (1)

Jucius Maximus (229128) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992430)

"Not only are Intel already at .13 micron, but they are also at 300mm. They already have a .1 micron facility in progress, so IBM will be playing catch-up. Luckily for IBM, Intel facility seems delayed."

Just to clarify, that's a 300 mm wafer using an 0.1 micron process.

Re:Intel at .13? (2)

crow (16139) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992327)

Right, but it depends on what type of chip IBM is going to produce. I expect many other chips are still being produced at .25 microns. So while the article was at best worded poorly, it may be an indication of the market IBM is planning on competing in.

Re:Intel at .13? (1)

farfolen (567038) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992350)

isn't that the core, not the actual chip size?

Jobs? (0, Offtopic)

imta11 (129979) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992206)

Anyone here hiring for this? I'd like a job as a chipmaker or lawnmower.

Upstate, eh? (1, Offtopic)

Glove d'OJ (227281) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992207)

East Fishkill is *so* no Upstate NY. Albany? That's upstate. Syracuse? Definitely upstate? Fishkill? No freaking way.

East Fishkill is 1/2 way between NYC and the extension of the horizontal line that divides most of NY and PA.

Dude, get your geography straight, or at least *look* at a map.

(sheesh)

WWJD? JWRTFM!

Re:Upstate, eh? (0, Offtopic)

mattreilly (33603) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992266)

Anything north of NYC is upstate.

Re:Upstate, eh? (1)

doppleganger871 (303020) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992336)

True, but for those of use that actually live up here... we can separate the vast amount of land into Western, Central, Southern Tier, Northern, and Damn-Near-Canuk.

Re:Upstate, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992293)

Syracuse? Central NY! Buffalo? Western NY!
The rest of us in NYS would rather not be refered to relative to NYC. Only NYC commuters live upstate.

Re:Upstate, eh? (3, Funny)

dbrutus (71639) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992309)

For somebody from Long Island, everything north of the Bronx is upstate.

Re:Upstate, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992323)

I agree with you... It's stupid, but the term 'upstate' has been rather corrupted in New York state to the point it is meaningless... Everything north of NYC qualifying as upstate just makes the term lose any sense of signifigance.

People try to justify it by saying 'Well, if you divide the state by population rather than geographical area, it makes sense to draw the line so far south because that wa upsate is simply north of a majority of the residents of the state.' But the thing is, upstate is supposed to be a geographical term... It's about describing a location, and by defining it as north of NYC... well, it becomes rather meaningless since >90% of the state is therefore 'upstate'...

Garr... enough ranting...

Embedded (3, Interesting)

levik (52444) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992209)

So these new chips will probably be targeted mostly at embedded/handheld devices, where running at lower temperatures is more important than raw power, since you can't have a loud fan in a set-top box drowning out your home theater system, or a big heat-sink in a palm-top (for obvious reasons)...

I kinda wish IBM whould come out with a x86 compatible chip to introduce some competition to the field. Their big name should give them enough of a leverage to allow them to enter the market, and I truly believe them capable of delivering a high-performance, low power product.

actually not (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992259)

they'll make chippies for whomever dropy by and orders a few thousand, from how I understand it

Re:Embedded (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992290)

I'm curious to know how you came to this conclusion. Smaller process chips do typically consume less power, but they consume MORE power per unit area. These chips won't necissarily be easier to cool, because they'll generate probably 20% more heat across the surface. Furthermore, they didn't even say that this plant was being used for microprocessors. Perhaps they'll make memory of some new type, or another unannounced product.

Re:Embedded (2, Interesting)

handorf (29768) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992311)

or a big heat-sink in a palm-top (for obvious reasons)...

I never understood this attitude. Just make it so that the processor speed scales with cooling ability. Most of the time a handheld PC will be attached to a 40-60kg heat sink with fairly good conduction properties (water cooling!). Why not take advantage of the situation?!?

Going nano (2)

XNormal (8617) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992216)

Since 0.09 micron starts is not so catch they'll probably call the next reduction in feature size 90 nanometers.

Ouch.

Interesting (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992219)

You know it all came from that crashed UFO in 1947!

It will be a struggle (1)

mhw25 (590290) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992226)

Current 0.13/300mm technology went into pilot production more than a year ago, and only Intel (or maybe AMD) seems to be able to get reasonably good yield on it now... Some even called 0.13/300mm the biggest vendor conspiracy ever. Well, good luck to IBM and may the step from 0.13 to 0.10 be less painful than 0.18/15 to 0.13 mircon.

Upstate NY paper (1)

ELCarlsson (570500) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992237)

Here's a story right from an upstaty NY newspaper:
Press and Sun Bulletin [pressconnects.com]

IBM used to be a big thing where I come from. It started in my hometown of Endicott NY. Over time it's slowly moved away. But I'm glad to see they still stay in upstate NY somewhat.

Intel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992239)

Intel hasn't produced much .25 in the past couple years. Hell, most .18 is getting phased out. They use .13 for just about everything, and .09 is coming down the pipe.

Does this mean (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992254)

The PPC speeds will jump again eventually?

A year ago i bought a dual 800 mhz g4; the best machine apple sold was a 1ghz g4. Today the best machine apple sels is a dual 1ghz g4. That is not impressive. Apple's done a great job with their end of the hardware over the last year-- i.e., the ipod, the redesigns of everything, the amazing software work they've done-- but the powerpc chips have just been a fall-down, stagnant disappointment for the last full year.

Apple should dump Motorola and hook up with IBM, it is clear this relationship is not working out..

Slashdot sucks (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992257)

Fuck! You (michael, cmdr taco..) fucking morons have killed Slashdot! This is a shitty piece of fuck website nowadays! Go to hell! Hope someone comes up with a new news site where hackers start to hang out.

That seems to be a pretty big leap (1)

enkidu55 (321423) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992278)

technology wise. How were they able to complete this transition without any of the competition doing anything along those lines? The last I heard AMD was just barely producing chipsets around the .13 design so to me that sounds like they are pretty far out in front of everybody else. Intel is running currently at .13 but I didn't even know they were to the point of going to .1 at this stage. Pretty cool advancement though. I always like to see technology expanding.

Hey this is all cool but (1)

Hacker'sEdict (593458) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992308)

.1 microns is theoretically the thinnest we can possibly make the gap between transistors or circuits b/c if you go any thinner the ESD off of the curciut or transistor will overflow onto the next transistor or curcuit besides it and the info that is riding that curcuit will be lost. So where to we go from here are we going to be following up with the bio-processor? or the Crystal? I would really like to know. now that we have theoretically hit our limit where do we go now?

alabama blacksnake! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992319)

helow i LOVE nigger dick. so does taco. skinny twerp.

Microns..... (2, Funny)

Linuxthess (529239) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992320)

It's not the size that matters baby, it's how you use it!

----------

HAR HAR (-1)

TweeKinDaBahx (583007) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992349)

TEH TROLL REPROT CANOT BE SOTPPED!!

Anyways, good morning and welcome to /., I am your host, _TweeK_, and this is the troll report.

Progress on Operation Packrat is... uh... progressing? I dunno, fucking bug sllort, not me.

goatse.info is on the horizon, and a new level of fj33r will soon occupy your christian soul. That's right kiddies, I'm gonna eat your soul.

Question to a proctologist: "So if I get AIDS, and I shit on my GF's face, can she get AIDS too?"

I'm eating a dough nut and you can't have any, so bugger off.

Of course, you could always eat his doughnut.

oh right, and 45th post biznitches...

jamie@thatsachocolatedoughnut.vg is a fag.

malda, is also, a fag.

POSTERS READ THE ARTICLE B4 U POST (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992352)

Could just be nitpicking, but it specifically says SMALLER THAN .1
Just wanted to say :)

The plant also will be the first to mass produce circuits thinner than 0.1 micron, or 1,000 times thinner than a human hair. The old standard was 0.25 microns, with some chips now at 0.18 microns. The thinner lines, or conduits, allow chips to run faster and use less electricity.

new technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#3992353)

The plant, which combines new technology such as copper wiring, silicon-on-insulator-based transistors and improved insulation -- copper wiring? when did I miss that?

I'll be damned... (2, Informative)

powerlinekid (442532) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992369)

"Look ma, I'm on slashdot"... well not exactly but I actually work there. I program the testing systems so that the engineers can run test on the wafers. The ribbon cutting was pretty cool, CEO Sam was here and so was George Pataki. Nothing like sitting in the conourse for lunch and seeing a massive black helicopter fly overhead. Got a free hat out of it... to be entirely honest this is a big deal but business here really isn't going to change. We've been porting our testing system from the old design to the 300mm for awhile now and theres been alot of restructuring of the departments such as moving people to the new 300mm ones etc.

What will they make? PowerPC? (3, Insightful)

crow (16139) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992372)

The real demand for using the smaller feature size is in two areas--low power and high performance. In the low-power market, you have all sorts of consumer electronics like cell phones. In the high performance, you're talking CPUs. Personally, I would love to see them build PowerPC chips.

From the article, it sounds like they'll be operating the plan under contract from other companies, so it will most likely be making chipsets for pagers and cell phones.

Of course, the market can be expected to change significantly between now and when the plant is actually ready to build chips.

Christ (1)

Ungulate (146381) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992404)

Are this many people on Slashdot ignorant of basic mathematics? .1 is not much smaller than the current .13, people. Intel's next gen P4, Prescott is .09, as is AMD's secend generation of Hammers.

Tenths, hundreths, thousandths.

IBM vaporchip (3, Funny)

mapmaker (140036) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992405)

AP Reporter: Wow! 0.1 microns! How small is that?

IBM marketroid: That's almost as small as some gas molecules. In fact, you could say these new chips are just VAPOR.

How long (1)

anonymousman77 (584651) | more than 11 years ago | (#3992409)

How long will this one be open before they realize they can open one in China and have $.50/hour labor???
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