The IBM Technology Alliance which features famous members such as GlobalFoundries [former AMD], Chartered, Samsung, Infineon and STMicroelectronics are jointly developing a 28nm technology process. As a part of today’s release, Low-Power 28nm technology evaluation kit was released end of March 2009.
It is expected that production of first 28nm chips will hit the market sometimes in the second half of 2010, meanining that 32nm process is considered just as a middle-step towards 28nm. Experts say that the transition from 32nm to 28nm will be easy as no major redesign will be necessary; thus saving costs and energy for the new generation of mobile device microprocessors.
The development of the 28nm low-power process is an important step towards the 28nm high-power process used in desktop and server processors. Compared to current 45nm full-node, new 28nm chips will require only 50% the size and offer 40% performance improvement as well as 20% less power consumption.
Editor’s Note: Unlike 45nm and 32nm process technology, ITRS regards 28nm as a half-node [half-pitch] process technology, usually considered as a middle step between two process technologies. Thus, it can be compared to 40nm and 55nm half-nodes, evolutions of 45nm and 65nm processes.