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Intel’s Path to Manufacturing Leadership

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By Keyvan Esfarjani, senior vice president and general manager of Manufacturing, Supply Chain and Operations

Today, we hosted Intel Accelerated to share our progress in developing foundational silicon innovations to put Intel back on the path to technological leadership, which is foundational to Intel’s unmatched heritage of innovation in semiconductor manufacturing. We have introduced a number of industry-first technologies that have been successfully manufactured at scale and profoundly impacted the semiconductor ecosystem, such as strained silicon, high-K metal gate and the 3D FinFET transistor. The process and packaging technologies unveiled today continue that tradition, and Intel is investing to scale those innovations.

Earlier this year, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger unveiled a new IDM 2.0 Strategy with substantial investment in our internal factory network in the U.S. and Europe and the creation of a world-class foundry business to serve the growing global demand for chips. He declared our ambition to restore our technology and manufacturing leadership. And while manufacturing is a critical component of IDM 2.0, the process and packaging technologies that feed our factories are the heartbeat of our global manufacturing network.

The announcements today are proof that we are well on our way, and they are a demonstration of the value of a pipeline that encompasses the full spectrum from early-stage R&D to high-volume manufacturing. We call it “lab to fab.” We believe capability combined with manufacturing capacity and a world class supply chain is the only way to achieve true innovation leadership.

The bulk of these breakthroughs are homegrown at our Oregon and Arizona development sites and will be transferred to our high-volume manufacturing network, cementing our role as the only leading-edge player doing both R&D and leading-edge manufacturing in the U.S. Additionally, the innovations draw on close collaboration with an ecosystem of partners in both the U.S. and Europe, including ASML, IBM, IMEC and CEA-Leti. These suppliers of advanced fab equipment and research organizations help bring foundational innovations from the lab to the manufacturing floor. Deep, longstanding partnerships in the U.S. and Europe are key to a strong ecosystem.

Among the announcements today are a roadmap of process and packaging innovations to power the next wave of products that will ramp into high-volume manufacturing through 2025 and beyond. Intel unveiled two breakthrough process technologies, including an industry-first backside power delivery method and Intel’s first new transistor architecture in more than a decade. Intel also announced advanced 3D packaging innovations and new node naming to create a consistent framework and give customers a more accurate view of process nodes across the industry. Finally, we are pleased to share the first customers of our new Intel Foundry Services.

Our teams at Intel are working hard to “put our chips on the table” and deliver on that vision to restore technology leadership. And while I’m proud of the progress we announced today, we need to go faster. And government partnerships can help.

As we advance the technology and manufacturing capability that powers our smart grid, financial systems, healthcare and defense operations, I am encouraged by the recognition of the importance of this foundational technology by government leaders. The semiconductor industry incentive programs outlined in both the U.S. and EU will help create a sustainable innovation ecosystem and strong national and economic security. Together, industry and government can achieve true innovation leadership through supporting robust semiconductor R&D capability and increasing world-class manufacturing capacity.






This article contains forward-looking statements about Intel’s future plans or expectations, including with respect to future technology and products and the expected benefits and availability of such technology and products.  These statements are based on expectations as of the date of this article and involve many risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements.  For more information on the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially, see Intel’s press release dated July 26, 2021 and its SEC filings at www.intc.com. Intel does not undertake, and expressly disclaims any duty, to update any statement made in this article, whether as a result of new information, new developments or otherwise, except to the extent that disclosure may be required by law.