Intel Builds World's First One Square Micron SRAM Cell
First Silicon on Intel's 90-Nanometer Process Technology
SANTA CLARA, Calif., March 12, 2002 - Researchers at Intel Corporation have built the world's smallest SRAM (Static Random Access Memory) memory cell, measuring only one square micron. These cells, the building blocks of memory chips, were built as part of fully functional SRAM devices manufactured using Intel's next-generation 90-nanometer (nm) process technology. The achievement is a milestone toward implementing the new process for production in 2003.
"Intel's one square micron SRAM cell has established a new density benchmark for silicon technology," said Sunlin Chou, senior vice president and general manager of Intel's Technology and Manufacturing Group. "This result gives us an early lead on 90 nm process technology for microprocessors and other products."
With the 90 nm process technology, Intel is on pace to extend its record of introducing a new process generation every two years. The company will build many of its products on this process, including processors, chipsets and communications products. Intel plans to use the 90 nm technology exclusively on 300 mm wafers.
SRAM Chip Details
Intel researchers built 52-megabit chips (capable of storing 52 million individual bits of information), each containing 330 million transistors on a chip only 109 square millimeters in size -- smaller than a dime. These are the highest-capacity SRAM chips ever reported.
These semiconductor devices were manufactured at Intel's 300 mm development fab (D1C) in Hillsboro, Ore., using a combination of advanced 193 nm and 248 nm lithography tools.
SRAM chips are commonly used as test vehicles to develop next-generation logic manufacturing processes. The small memory cell size is significant because it will enable Intel to cost-effectively increase microprocessor performance by adding more on-die cache memory and increasing overall logic density. The working SRAM chips also demonstrate successful implementation of all of the 90nm process features required for microprocessors, including high- performance transistors and interconnects.
For more information on Intel's silicon research, visit the Intel Silicon Showcase at www.intel.com/research/silicon.
Intel, the world's largest chip maker, is also a leading manufacturer of computer, networking and communications products. Additional information about Intel is available at www.intel.com/pressroom
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