Toshiba Initiates Pilot Production of Semiconductors Using 40nm Process Tech

Toshiba Ready with 40nm, 45nm Process Technologies, Sony Not Ready with Designs

by Anton Shilov
10/23/2008 | 04:49 PM

Toshiba Corp. said at a symposium that its 40nm and 45nm process technologies are ready and that the company has moved into “pilot line” production for those fabrication processors. However, Toshiba’s main customer, Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., has not yet designed 40nm or 45nm versions of its chips that are used inside Sony PlayStation 3 video game system.

 

Masakazu Kakumu, corporate vice president and vice president of the system LSI division at Toshiba Semiconductor Company reportedly said at the 5th ISMI Symposium on Manufacturing Effectiveness that the 40nm, high-performance process is ready, with a low-power version due in mid-2009. The first client to adopt the new process technology is Sony, who plans to create 45nm version of PS3’s RSX graphics processing unit (GPU).

“We are waiting for the graphics engine from Sony,” said Mr. Kakumu in an interview with EETimes web-site.

Toshiba has two main 300mm semiconductor manufacturing facilities, which can produce chips using 65nm as well as 45nm/40nm process technologies. The fabs are located in Nagasaki and Oita. In addition, Toshiba owns 60% stake in Nagasaki Technology Center of Sony Semiconductor Kyushu Corp. (SCK).

Last year, Sony sold and transferred to Toshiba its 300-mm wafer line fabrication facilities installed in Fab 2 of Sony Semiconductor Kyushu Corp.'s Nagasaki Technology Center.