June 13, 2024

Today after we speak about what’s subsequent for chip design, we concentrate on issues like cramming in additional cores, growing clock speeds, shrinking transistors and 3D stacking. We not often take into consideration the package deal substrate, which holds and connects these parts. In the present day Intel, within the midst of its reinvention as a foundry firm, has introduced it is made a significant breakthrough in substrate supplies—and it is all about glass.

The corporate says its new glass substrate, which is ready to reach in superior chip designs later this decade, might be stronger and extra environment friendly than present natural supplies. Glass will even permit the corporate to cram extra chiplets and different parts subsequent to one another, one thing that would result in flexing and instability with an present silicon package deal utilizing natural supplies.

“Glass substrates can tolerate larger temperatures, supply 50% much less sample distortion, and have ultra-low flatness for improved depth of focus for lithography, and have the dimensional stability wanted for terribly tight layer-to-layer interconnect overlay,” Intel stated in a press launch. With these capabilities, the corporate claims glass substrates will even result in a ten-fold enhance in interconnect density, in addition to permit for “ultra-large form-factor packages with very excessive meeting yields.”

Intel glass substrate


We’re slowly starting to see what Intel’s future chips might truly seem like. Two years in the past, the corporate introduced its “gate-all-around” transistor design, RibbonFET, in addition to PowerVia, which might let Intel transfer energy supply to the rear of a chip wafer. On the similar time, Intel additionally introduced it might be constructing chips for Qualcomm and Amazon’s AWS service.

Intel says we’ll see chips utilizing glass substrates in areas in excessive efficiency areas first, like AI, graphics and information facilities. The glass breakthrough is one other signal that Intel is ramping up its superior packaging capabilities for its US foundries, as properly. That is one thing TSMC is reportedly stumbling on with its Phoenix, Arizona plant, which would require transport chip supplies again to Taiwan for superior packaging.

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