In the field of semiconductors, although China is the world’s largest market, accounting for about 1/3 of the global share, it is relatively backward in core technology, especially the top semiconductor process, which is basically in the hands of Intel, TSMC, Samsung and other companies.
As the largest and most powerful wafer foundry in China, SMIC is the key for the domestic semiconductor manufacturing industry to catch up with the advanced. At the end of last year, they mass-produced the 14nm process and contributed 1% of the revenue in the Q4 quarter.
In addition, SMIC is still catching up with advanced processes after 14nm. At the financial report meeting in February, Dr. Liang Mengsong, co-CEO of SMIC, also disclosed the N+1 and N+2 generation processes for the first time.
He said that compared with 14nm, the N+1 process has improved performance by 20%, reduced power consumption by 57%, reduced logic area by 63%, and reduced SoC area by 55%.
After N+1, there will be N+2. The power consumption of these two processes is similar. The difference lies in performance and cost. N+2 is obviously for high performance, and the cost will also increase.
SMIC’s fab distribution at home and abroad
SMIC’s N+1 process is equivalent to TSMC’s first-generation 7nm process, which is biased towards lower power consumption. The N+2 process focuses on improving performance, which is equivalent to TSMC’s 7nm+ process.
Further news said that SMIC’s 7nm-level process is progressing faster than expected, and it will be produced by the end of this year, although it must be trial production at the beginning, and the production capacity will not be much.
The news that SMIC’s 7nm process will come out at the end of the year is not only concerned by Chinese people, but also reported by European and American technology media recently. In addition to paying attention to technical issues, they also believe that this event is of great significance to China’s semiconductor industry.
In short, if SMIC’s 7nm process goes smoothly, then Chinese companies are catching up in semiconductor core technology. Although they can’t lead the way, they are qualified to compete at the same level.
Author: Xian Rui
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