Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd. (TWSE: 2330, NYSE: TSM) announced the foundry segment’s first functional 65-nanometer (nm) multi-time programmable (MTP) non-volatile memory (NVM) process technology. The technology incorporates process-qualified MTP IP blocks jointly developed with Virage Logic. The new technology is the first 2.5 volt MTP process, breaking the heretofore 3.3 volt baseline barrier. It eliminates the need for an external EEPROM currently in many systems applications, thereby reducing power, area and costs while increasing data security.
Built on TSMC’s 65nm Low Power (LP) process, the new MTP technology features up to 8k bits memory size that is ideal for small memory requirements associated with MP3 music downloadable digital rights management, RFID devices, fingerprint identification applications, and pre-paid cash or phone cards.
The 65nm MTP process is built up to 10 metal layers using copper low-k interconnects and nickel silicide transistor interconnects. The technology is fully logic-compatible and the NVM memory requires no additional processes or masks. Devices built using the process will support full read and program operations across temperatures ranging from -40 degrees C to 125 degrees C, with minimum 10-year data retention at 125 degrees C.
“With inputs from customers’ design needs, we are convinced this 65nm process is well-suited for applications that require a small memory footprint on a leading edge manufacturing technology,” explains Jason Chen, vice president Worldwide Sales and Marketing for TSMC.
“TSMC and Virage Logic have worked together on the 65nm MTP process to bring true multi-time NVM programmability to such market segments as security and wireless where advanced process adoption is crucial,” said Dr. Yankin Tanurhan, vice president and general manager, NVM Solutions, Virage Logic. “Because AEON is based on a standard logic CMOS process, it requires no additional masks or processes which eliminates the costly manufacturing steps normally involved with floating gate memory while reducing the engineering effort and associated costs of integrating NVM into SoC designs.”
TSMC 65nm Process Technology
Since TSMC first announced commercial availability of its 65nm process in 2006, the company has shipped over 700,000 12-inch wafers manufactured in its Fab 12 and Fab 14. The full 65nm process node includes logic, mixed-signal, R/F, and high-density memory options and supports a broad range of computing, communications, and consumer electronics applications.
The 65nm LP process is ideal for cellular baseband, as well as portable applications and multimedia processors. The 65nm general-purpose (G) process targets graphics, networking and high-end ASIC fabrication, while the high-speed process is intended for CPU and advanced graphics processors. The 65nm LP plus G process that offers both low power and general purpose devices on the same wafer, supports wireless and portable applications requiring both low power and high performance.
TSMC’s 65nm node also supports an embedded DRAM option for high bandwidth, fast data rate designs found in high-speed consumer applications and in very small form factor handheld devices.
All TSMC 65nm processes are supported by the company’s Design Support Ecosystem featuring DFM-compliant products and services; by TSMC Reference Flow design methodology; and by a variety of process-proven TSMC and third party IP libraries including a memory compiler, I/O and standard cell libraries.
TSMC is the world’s largest dedicated semiconductor foundry, providing the industry’s leading process technology and the foundry’s largest portfolio of process-proven libraries, IP, design tools and reference flows. The Company’s total managed capacity in 2008 exceeded 9 million 8-inch equivalent wafers, including capacity from two advanced 12-inch – GigaFabs(TM), four eight-inch fabs, one six-inch fab, as well as TSMC’s wholly owned subsidiaries, WaferTech and TSMC (China), and its joint venture fab, SSMC. TSMC is the first foundry to provide 40nm production capabilities. Its corporate headquarters are in Hsinchu, Taiwan.