DRESDEN, Germany Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.'s 300-mm wafer ramp-up here is "right on schedule, not a single day behind," according to Hans Deppe, corporate vice president and general manager of AMD Saxony.
Deppe, responsible for AMD's Fab 30 (200-mm wafer fab) and Fab 36 (300-mm wafer fab) here, is a self-styled "ramp-up specialist." He challenged analysts' concerns about the slower than expected ramp of AMD's Fab 36.
Deppe stressed that Fab 36 "has never missed a milestone."
The 90-nm production at Fab36 "began at very mature yields," according to Deppe. He reiterated that Fab 36 will ramp up to 13,000 300-mm wafers per month by the end of this year. AMD's goal is to increase production to "20,000 wafers per month in the second half of 2007," he said. "Nobody can install all the necessary tools any faster than we are doing now."
AMD Dresden's Hans Deppe
The conversion from 90- to 65-nm processes at Fab 36 is proceeding in "a well-integrated manner," said Deppe. AMD is using a methodology called "Shared Transfer Transistors." At Fab 36, where the first commercial 90-nm products rolled in March, Deppe said AMD began testing 65-nm transistors using 90-nm process technology last June.
The first 65-nm product, the dual-core desktop Athlon 6, will be ready in the second half of 2006, he said.
The company expects second quarter sales to be flat to slightly down from the previous quarter, largely because of seasonal fluctuations. "There is nothing in the market demand indicating that we need to slow down the ramp at Fab 36," Deppe said.
The status on 45-nm and beyond is the focus of an IBM-AMD Joint Development Alliance (JDA). JDA (East Fishkill, N.Y.) is working on basic R&D for new technology, but AMD Dresden claims to be heavily involved in research.
AMD Dresden, which has been running its leading edge process technology since the opening of Fab 30, wants to ensure that the R&D team understands they must develop technology and tools designed for manufacturing efficiency. By regularly sending members of its engineering staff from Dresden to East Fishkill, "We are pushing for design for manufacturability," said Deppe.
Asked if AMD is moving toward 193-nm immersion lithography with a 45-nm process, Deppe noted that this is a hot topic in regular review meetings with JDA. "Yes, we are preparing ourselves to use and apply the wet technology at any point, when needed," said Deppe. He added that AMD Dresden will be ready for it in the second half of 2007.
Similarly, AMD is preparing to use high-k dielectrics for gate stacks at 45-nm, according to Deppe. He declined to offer a target date.
As for sourcing advanced masks for its fabs, Deppe said AMD is satisfied with the performance of masks developed by the Advanced Mask Technology Center. AMTC was jointly established by AMD, Infineon and DuPont&151;recently acquired by Toppan.