Samsung expands foundry capacity with new EUV production line

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Many industry experts believe that the immediate future of the semiconductor industry lies with extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV). The process uses focused bursts of light to carve transistors into silicon wafers. While silicon chips are still on their last leg, EUV manufacturing is helping extend their lifespan. It’s a revolutionary approach and only a few chipmakers are set up to produce components using the technology.

Samsung is one of those. It now plans to expand its foundry capacity by opening up a new EUV production line in Pyeongtaek, South Korea. The company notes that its new facility will help meet global demand for EUV solutions.

Getting Smaller

Samsung’s new foundry line will mainly focus on EUV-based 5nm and below processes. That means it will be cranking out chips to support countless next-generation applications. Components made with 5nm and below processes will power things like 5G, artificial intelligence (AI), and the world’s fastest consumer devices.

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Samsung reportedly started constructing the facility this month and it is expected to begin full operations in the second half of 2021. Given the current global situation, the timeline could be delayed. However, Samsung will undoubtedly want to finish it as soon as possible.

Dr. ES Jung, president and head of foundry business at Samsung said in a press release, “This new production facility will expand Samsung’s manufacturing capabilities for sub-5nm process and enable us to rapidly respond to the increasing demand for EUV-based solutions.”

He adds, “We remain committed to addressing the needs of our customers through active investments and recruitment of talents. This will enable us to continue to break new ground while driving robust growth for Samsung’s foundry business.”

Gaining Momentum

Samsung is making a name for itself in the EUV world. By expanding its foundry capacity with a new production line, it can ensure that it remains at the forefront of innovation for the coming decade.

After its initial mass production of the EUV-based 7nm process in the early half of 2019, Samsung opened a new EUV-dedicated V1 line in Hwaseong, South Korea. It aims to start mass-producing chips with the 5nm EUV process the facility later this year. The Pyeongtaek foundry is expected to significantly increase the company’s capacity.

With its latest addition, Samsung will now have a total of seven foundry production lines located in both South Korea and the United States.

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