Intel|”Reinvents” Microprocessor with New 3D Design
As Intel’s devotion to Moore’s Law—which, in simplified form, suggests that the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles every two years—has resulted in ever thinner microprocessors, the latest of which are down to 32nm in thickness. But recently, Intel announced that it is now increasing the number of transistors on its chips by growing in a third dimension. And according to Intel, these so-called 3D chips are a truly revolutionary new approach.Since only experts can analyze what pros & cons these new design structure has, we just present the updated news from Intel News Press.
The three-dimensional Tri-Gate transistors represent a fundamental departure from the two-dimensional planar transistor structure that has powered not only all computers, mobile phones and consumer electronics to-date, but also the electronic controls within cars, spacecraft, household appliances, medical devices and virtually thousands of other everyday devices for decades.
Intel already has 80.8 per cent of the PC processor market, compared with 18.9 per cent for its rival AMD, according to figures released by IDC, an research firm. However, according to IDC ,Intel has failed to produce chips power-efficient enough for use in mobile phones and tablet computers, where Arm-based chips dominate.So as an alternative focus is done on 3-D design.
“Intel’s scientists and engineers have once again reinvented the transistor, this time utilizing the third dimension,” said Intel President and CEO Paul Otellini. “Amazing, world-shaping devices will be created from this capability as we advance Moore’s Law into new realms.”
The new chip design, dubbed Finfet (for fin field-effect transistor), includes a new series of raised fins that contain a new conductive area, or transistor, dramatically increasing the performance and power management of the resulting chip when compared with traditional, flat chips of the same thickness. As you can see in the image below, the resulting transistor takes on a grilled appearance, much like certain snack chips.
According to Intel, the new design results in a 37 percent performance boost and a power-consumption reduction of up to 50 percent. But the company is also looking ahead: It announced a 22nm process for these new chips this week, compared with today’s more traditional 32nm chips, and it plans to hit 10nm with the same design by 2015. These smaller, denser chips will also provide various performance and power-management improvements of their own, Intel says.