STMicroelectronics has found an alternative production partner for the FD-SOI process that the European chipmaker is presenting as an easier option for SoC designers than the current crop of FinFET-based processes. Samsung Electronics has agreed to provide its foundry customers with 28nm FD-SOI production.
Two years ago, ST signed an agreement with GlobalFoundries for both 28nm and 20nm FD-SOI production but has not yet moved in volume production. Since then, ST has realigned its work to focus primarily on what it calls 14nm FD-SOI as the next step down from 28nm, with 10nm seen as a future, medium-term offering.
Samsung said it will qualify its version of the 28nm FD-SOI process for production in early 2015. In April, GlobalFoundries decided to license the 14nm FinFET process developed by Samsung. Mass production of that technology is expected by the end of the year.
“The agreement [for 28nm FD-SOI] confirms and strengthens further the business momentum that we have experienced on this technology during the past quarters through many customers and project engagements in our embedded processing solutions segment,” claimed Jean-Marc Chery, ST chief operating officer. “We foresee further expansion of the 28nm FD-SOI ecosystem, to include the leading EDA and IP suppliers, which will enrich the IP catalog available for 28nm FD-SOI.”
“We are pleased to announce this 28nm FD-SOI collaboration with ST. This is an ideal solution for customers looking for extra performance and power efficiency at the 28nm node without having to migrate to 20nm,” said Dr. Seh-Woong Jeong, executive vice president of System LSI Business, Samsung Electronics.