AMD schedules first 65nm processor shipments for H2 2006

Munich (Germany) - AMD today said that it is on track to ship its first 65 nm processors in the second half of this year. The company claims that it already has been producing a significant number of 65nm development test chips to lay the foundation for a volume conversion of its manufacturing process by mid-2007.

AMD's first substantial 65 nm announcement was made at a press conference at the Semicon Europa 2006 event, which is currently held in Munich, Germany. Other than rumors in past days have indicated, the company did not actually demonstrate a 65 nm processor, but decided to rather reassure Semicon visitors that its silicon is stable and on schedule.

According to Dirk Meyer, AMD's president and chief operating officer, 65 nm chips have been sampling for quite a while in AMD's Fab 36 in Dresden and have been manufactured parallel to 90 nm CPUs on 300 mm wafers. While details were scarce, the company apparently is running the CPUs through its validation track, collecting and analyzing data to eliminate errors and improve production efficiency.

AMD did not announce specific processors, however there appears to be little change to previous statements that the firm's first 65 nm processors may be introduced late this year or early in 2007. The company is expected to quickly transition to 65 nm once the first wave of commercial products will have shipped. Production will be "substantially" converted to 65nm production by mid-2007, AMD said. "Our manufacturing strategy execution continues to be flawless," said Meyer in a prepared statement. "The increased capacity provided by Fab 36 will contribute to our goal of doubling total production output from 2005 through 2008."

AMD's Fab 36 is located on the same site as the 200 mm 90 nm Fab 30. The company claims that it has increased total production output at Fab 30 by approximately 80% from the first quarter of 2004 through the fourth quarter of 2005. The fab, which was originally designed to produce a maximum of 20,000 wafers per month, now produces approximately 30,000 wafers per month. Fab 36 was recently brought online and began first revenue shipments of AMD64 processors in March of this year.