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TSMC’s CEO said the company has started volume production of its 7N+ process technology, DigitTimes reported on Friday. It is the company’s first process node to use EUV on a few critical layers. The company says the yield is on par with 7nm.
In February, DigitTimes had reported that volume production would start in late March, so it appears that it has been delayed by up to two months. The company did not mention what the first 7N+ product will be, but it is rumored that Huawei’s Kirin 985 will be built on 7N+. The node will provide a 20% increase in transistor density and offers 10% more performance or 15% lower power than the first generation 7nm.
7N+ is not the only node in TSMC’s 7nm portfolio. The company will also introduce a second-gen 7nm process this year, and next year it will start risk production of 6nm.
TSMC has also said that its 7nm capacity this year will be 150% higher than last year and that 5nm mass production will start in the first quarter of 2020 at Fab 18. That node will leverage EUV in more layers and the company has started equipment move-in. Adjacent to Fab 18, the company has reserved land for the construction of its 3nm fab.