Expanding the Manufacturing Infrastructure for Smart Mobile Devices

Samsung Semiconductor and GLOBALFOUNDRIES have collaborated over the past several years to ensure that advanced process technology remains competitive. Today, I’m pleased to share that we’re broadening our joint work in order to manufacture chips based on a new high-performance and low-leakage 28nm High-K Metal Gate (HKMG) technology.

This process allows us to produce chips for mobile devices that offer a 60 percent active power reduction or a 55 percent performance boost as compared with 45nm generation devices. With the explosive growth of the tablet, smart phone and laptop markets, we see a huge demand for increasing performance and longer battery life. This fab sync agreement will help enable access to this technology at today’s most advanced manufacturing facilities across geographically diverse locations.

Samsung and GLOBALFOUNDRIES’s fabs will work together to create somewhat of a “virtual fab” to manufacture these chips. Each company has two 300mm fabs that will qualify the technology: Samsung S1 in Giheung, Korea, where the technology is being developed, and the company’s recently expanded fab, S2 in Austin, Texas; and GLOBALFOUNDRIES Fab 1 in Dresden, Germany and Fab 8 in Saratoga County, New York when completed.

Combined, these four manufacturing facilities are estimated to be the largest in the foundry industry for 28nm capacity. We will be able to offer our customers diversified sources of supply with global support systems.

Yesterday’s announcement truly reinforces that industry leaders can work together to ensure a competitive advantage in a constantly evolving climate.

I’ve posted the text of the official release below. Do you know of other companies collaborating to make better performing consumer end-products? If so, I’d love to hear your thoughts on those collaborations in the comments below.


GLOBALFOUNDRIES and Samsung Extend Fab Sync to New

High-Performance 28nm Technology for Mobile Applications

 Technology to enable mobile devices with unprecedented performance and battery life

Milpitas, Calif. and Seoul, Korea, August 30, 2011 — GLOBALFOUNDRIES and Samsung Electronics, Co., Ltd.  broadened their collaboration, announcing plans to synchronize global semiconductor fabrication facilities to produce chips based on a new high-performance and low-leakage 28nm High-K Metal Gate (HKMG) technology.   The technology has been specifically developed for mobile device applications, offering 60 percent of active power reduction at the same frequency or 55 percent of performance boost at the same leakage over 45nm low power (LP) SoC designs.  

In 2010, GLOBALFOUNDRIES and Samsung announced a fab synchronization on low-power 28nm HKMG technology in collaboration with IBM and STMicroelectronics. This low-power technology is qualified and fully design enabled with standard cell libraries, memory compilers, and additional complex IP blocks. The high-performance offering announced today complements the low-power technology, extending the frequency of operation for high-performance smartphones, tablets, and notebook computers, while retaining ultra-low leakage transistors and memories to enable the long battery life needed for mobile environments.

The companies are proving the collaborative value of a synchronized platform by working with several customers to optimize processes and tooling for both the low-power and high-performance 28nm HKMG technologies. The synchronization process helps ensure consistent production worldwide, enabling customer chip designs to be produced at multiple sources with no redesign required, leveraging the customers’ design investments.

By virtue of the synchronization, the collaboration presents a “virtual fab” that derives manufacturing capacity from four geographically diverse fabs. Each company has two 300mm fabs that will qualify the technology: GLOBALFOUNDRIES Fab 1 inDresden,Germanyand Fab 8 inSaratoga County,New York; and Samsung S1 inGiheung,Koreaand the company’s recently expanded fab, S2 inAustin,Texas. The four fabs represent a global footprint estimated to be the largest in the foundry industry for leading-edge capacity, offering customer choice enabled by close collaboration and an unparalleled de-risking of supply chain uncertainties.

“We are pleased to offer smart, innovative foundry solutions to our customers through this unique collaboration. This 28nm process will be the first semiconductor technology to truly eliminate the border between desktop computers and mobile devices, said Jay Min, vice president of System LSI foundry marketing, Device Solutions, Samsung Electronics.

“With this new collaboration, we are making one of the industry’s strongest manufacturing partnerships even stronger, while giving customers another platform to drive innovation in mobile technology,” said Jim Kupec, senior vice president of worldwide sales and marketing at GLOBALFOUNDRIES. “Customers using this new offering will gain accelerated time to volume production and assurance of supply, and they will be able to leverage significant learning from the foundry industry’s first high-volume ramp of HKMG technology at 32nm in 1H2011”

The new high performance process is based on the 28nm “Gate First” HKMG technology utilized for the low power process announced in 2010.  As with the low power 28nm technology that is fully design-enabled today, a comprehensive System-on-a-Chip (SoC) design platform will be implemented for the high performance offering to enable seamless customer design-in to the multiple global manufacturing sites.

About Samsung Foundry

Samsung Electronics’ Foundry business is dedicated to support fabless and IDM semiconductor companies offering full service solutions encompassing design kits and proven IP to fully turnkey manufacturing to achieve market success with advanced IC designs by Foundry, ASIC and COT engagement. Currently in mass production at 45 nanometer (nm), and qualified for 32/28nm Samsung Foundry is also preparing next generation 20nm and beyond process technologies by leveraging the deep expertise in advanced process technologies, design technologies, as well as a long, proven track record in high-volume manufacturing along with its continued participation in the International Semiconductor Development Alliance (ISDA). For more information, please visit www.samsung.com/Foundry.

About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in semiconductor, telecommunication, digital media and digital convergence technologies with 2010 consolidated sales of US$135.8 billion. Employing approximately 190,500 people in 206 offices across 68 countries, the company consists of nine independently operated business units: Visual Display, Mobile Communications, Telecommunication Systems, Digital Appliances, IT Solutions, Digital Imaging, Memory, System LSI and LCD. Recognized as one of the fastest growing global brands, Samsung Electronics is a leading producer of digital TVs, semiconductor chips, mobile phones and TFT-LCDs. For more information, please visit www.samsung.com.


GLOBALFOUNDRIES is the world’s first full-service semiconductor foundry with a truly global manufacturing and technology footprint. Launched in March 2009 through a partnership between AMD [NYSE: AMD] and the Advanced Technology Investment Company (ATIC), GLOBALFOUNDRIES provides a unique combination of advanced technology, manufacturing excellence and global operations. With the integration of Chartered in January 2010, GLOBALFOUNDRIES significantly expanded its capacity and ability to provide best-in-class foundry services from mainstream to the leading edge. GLOBALFOUNDRIES is headquartered in Silicon Valley with manufacturing operations in Singapore, Germany, and a new leading-edge fab under construction in Saratoga County, New York. These sites are supported by a global network of R&D, design enablement, and customer support in Singapore, China, Taiwan, Japan, the United States, Germany, and the United Kingdom. For more information on GLOBALFOUNDRIES, visit http://www.globalfoundries.com.