Samsung might have kicked off mass production of its next-gen 3nm GAA chips before TSMC, but the company has run into a multitude of problems so far… so much so that the South Korean electronics giant has reportedly needed to team with a US-based firm to help them get yields higher.
The new Samsung 3nm GAA yields are reportedly at just 20% — which is horrible, absolutely horrible — and after their disastrous last couple of process nodes, this isn’t what anyone wants to hear. A new report from the Commercial Times suggests that while Samsung’s new 3nm GAA process node was meant to deliver huge improvements across the board over its 5nm process node, there are serious issues at hand.
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Samsung has reportedly partnered up with US-based Silicon Frontline Technology, in the hope that the company can help boost its disastrous 3nm GAA yield rate. Silicon Frontline Technology has used methods to improve yield rates through water qualification and electrostatic discharge prevention technologies, but that’s still not a good look for Samsung up against the titan that is TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company).
ESD (or electrostatic discharge) is said to be the main cause of wafer defects, which could be the underlying issue of the shit yield rates of Samsung’s next-gen 3nm GAA chips. We won’t know if the benefits of Silicon Frontline Technology and its methods will help, as it will be many more months before the fruits of that labor will show positive (if any) results.
Samsung already lost Qualcomm to TSMC, and NVIDIA back to TSMC — and if this 3nm GAA yield rate continues… well, I don’t see why anyone would want to have their chips fabbed on Samsung’s new 3nm GAA — unless money talks, and it would have to be a crap load of it to throw your precious chips into the fire.
Considering that Samsung kicked off its initial production of 3nm GAA chips back in June, just months ago, this isn’t the best news at all… especially since TSMC is ramping everything up to 3nm. TSMC founder Morris Chang recently teased it would have a new 3nm fabrication plant next to its upcoming 5nm fab plant in Arizona, USA, too.