SAN JOSE, Calif. The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) on Wednesday (Jan. 21) released the 2003 edition of the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS), which now indicates that process technology nodes are about to return to a three-year cycle.
Previously, the ITRS roadmap called for a two-year cycle, with chips based on the 90-nm node due out in the 2003 time frame. The next process technology nodes would then follow a two-year cycle, according to analysts.
Under the new ITRS roadmap, the so-called high-volume or "year of production" for the 90-nm node is set for 2004. The "year of production" for the 65-nm node is due in 2007, while the 45-nm node has been extended to 2010, according to the roadmap.
At the same time, the 32-nm node has been slated for 2013 while the 22-nm node is scheduled for 2016.
"A big issue during the formulation of the 2003 ITRS was whether 2003 or 2004 would be the 'year-of-production' for the 90-nm technology node," said Robert Doering, Texas Instruments Inc.'s Senior Fellow of Silicon Technology Development.
"The conclusion was to leave it in 2004 a return to a '[rounded] three-year-per-node' pace. Of course, this does not indicate any abrupt transition in the rate of technology development," Doering added. "The rate of progress continues to evolve somewhere between 2 and 3 years."
There were other changes as well. "The 2003 ITRS has expanded its reach in two directions the analysis of novel memory devices operating on new principles, which describes new post-CMOS devices, and wireless communications, where, for the first time, the performance of silicon devices and the performance of III-V devices are compared in the application spectrum," said Paolo Gargini of Intel Corp.
"These two areas highlight the emergence of nanotechnology operations, as well as the convergence of applications shifting from analog to digital," he said.