SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- IBM Corp.'s ''fab club'' customers may have to stand in line to get their hands on early wafers based on high-k and metal gates.
In April, IBM and its partners in the race to develop and ship high-k dielectrics and metal gates for the 32-nm node revealed their process and are claiming they can now outperform the rest of the industry in performance and power consumption.
Silicon support for the technology was supposed to be available through a prototyping shuttle program starting in the third quarter of 2008, with plans for quarterly shuttles.
Design kits were shipped on July 2. The companies said the technology will be available to IBM and its foundry alliance partners in the second half of 2009.
By the looks of it, demand is strong for the technology. The prototyping shuttle program was sold out just after the introduction in April, said Gary Patton, vice president for IBM's Semiconductor Research and Development Center.
Demand is still overwhelming. ''The shuttle program is sold out," he said at the Common Platform Technology Forum here.
In comparison, TSMC will ship its first high-k/metal-gate technology at the 28-nm node by early 2010.