According to a report published in Taiwan’s Commercial Times, TSMC will begin transporting equipment into its new US plant in Q1 of next year. Please take this information with a grain of salt because the financial publication cites unnamed industry sources. As a reminder, the Arizona facility will be known as Fab21 and will be utilised to produce TSMC’s 5nm process family for its many customers.
The Arizona fab will produce chips in the 5nm, 5nm Enhanced, and 4nm processes, which TSMC identifies as its N5, N5P, and N4 processes. By the first quarter of 2024, the world’s largest contract chipmaker will have its US-based factory up and running, capable of producing 20,000 wafers per month.
Remember that in Taiwan, TSMC will continue to develop its cutting-edge leading fabs. It is, however, a safety net for it to expand internationally, to areas like the United States and Japan. Of course, given Taiwan’s geopolitical risk, this safety net could be valuable.
TSMC to Reportedly Move its 5nm production Equipment to Arizona’s Fab21 in Q1 2023
The source article covers the entirety of TSMC’s present construction plans both at home and abroad. To summarise, multiple new fabs are currently being built in Taiwan for processes as sophisticated as 2nm. Meanwhile, the Fab21 fab in the United States will be ready for 5nm / 4nm processes, and the JASM fab in Japan will be ready for 28/22nm at first, then 16/12nm. The plant in Japan will primarily serve the country’s massive imaging and automotive sectors.
TSMC’s 6nm technology is used in Intel’s recently released Arc Alchemist laptop GPUs. According to roadmaps, Intel will continue to produce its iGPUs in an ‘external’ fab (such as TSMC) until 2024. Its CPUs will have already advanced to Intel 18A by that time. As a result, it appears doubtful that Intel will employ TSMC Fab21 (5nm family) for any CPUs or GPUs in Arizona.