Texas Instruments Announces New 45nm Semiconductor Manufacturing Process

June 11, 2006 by Jeff Shepard

Texas Instruments Inc. (TI) has unveiled details of a 45-nanometer (nm) semiconductor manufacturing process that leverages a "wet" lithography process to double the number of chips produced on each silicon wafer, increase processing performance and reduce power consumption. Through the use of numerous proprietary techniques, TI will drive the capabilities of its multi-million transistor, system-on-chip processors to new levels, increasing performance by 30% while reducing power consumption 40%.

TI's 45-nm process leverages SmartReflex™ power and performance management technologies that combine intelligent and adaptive silicon, circuit design, and software to address these power management challenges. TI takes a system-level approach with SmartReflex technologies to extend the capability across an entire 45-nm SoC design, including adaptive hardware and software technologies that dynamically control voltage, frequency and power based on device activity, modes of operation and process and temperature variation.

"Together with our high-performance dc-dc converters (such as our recently announced TPS62350) that are compatible with SmartReflex, portable and system designers will be in a great position to take battery life to the next level," stated Doug Phillips, Marketing Manager for TI's portable power management products.

TI estimates that its 45-nm process and SoC integration capabilities will mean consumers can experience up to a 30 percent improvement in device speed, which can translate to more video frames per second for a better user experience on mobile phones. In addition, wireless users will be able to run more simultaneous applications such as a game with 3-D graphics in parallel to a video conference between the players, with e-mail synchronizing in the background. Other projections show that TI's 45-nm SoCs will reduce power by 40%, allowing longer video playback time and up to 30% longer cell phone stand-by time.

"TI's strength in chip manufacturing has resulted in a cost-effective process that will deliver 45-nm products, like mobile phone processors and DSPs, that simultaneously address performance, power consumption and transistor density," said Dr. Hans Stork, senior vice president and chief technology officer, Texas Instruments. "This gives our customers early access to faster, smaller and lower power products and continues TI's track record of delivering millions of units from high yielding wafers ahead of the industry."

The convergence of communications and computing on mobile devices, and the growing use of high performance multimedia, gaming and productivity applications, has pushed lower power consumption to the forefront of semiconductor technology advancement.