Samsung presents updated roadmap for its upcoming 3 nm and 2 nm production nodes
At its 5th annual Foundry Forum event, Samsung released updated information regarding the migration to the 3 nm and 2 nm advanced nodes based on the Gate-All-Around transistor structure. Samsung has yet to demonstrate that its 5 nm nodes are a viable alternative to TSMC’s N5 nodes that are used for the production of Apple’s latest mobile SoCs. As the competition between the two top leading foundries gets even more aggressive, Samsung is now trying to prove its superiority by pushing for the adoption of the GAA tech one generation ahead of TSMC, which still plans to use the venerable FinFET transistors in the upcoming N3 nodes.
Samsung specifies that its GAA tech is now known as MBCFET (Multi-Bridge-Channel FET). As the first node to use MBCFET, Samsung’s 3 nm fabrication process is said to decrease logic area by 35%, while improving performance by 30% and also lowering power requirements by 50% compared to the current 5 nm node. Moreover, process maturity has been improved, since the 3 nm node is already approaching similar logic yield levels to the intermediary 4 nm node that recently went online for mass production.
Just like TSMC’s N3 node, Samsung’s 3 nm process is scheduled to start producing customer chip designs in the first half of 2022. There will be a second generation 3 nm node expected to go online in 2023, and Samsung is estimating that the 2 nm nodes integrating refined MBCFET technology should be ready for mass production by 2025. TSMC, on the other hand, plans to integrate GAA transistors for the first time in its N2 nodes that are expected to go online in 2024.