TSMC ready for 18 inch wafers

Foundry-for-hire TSMC has reiterated plans to build its first 450mm wafer plant by 2017.

The new plant will offer FinFET transistor technology at 10nm and 7mm nodes and it should be completed in 2016 or 2017. The company also expects to adopt extreme ultraviolet lithography for the 10nm node by 2017. 

The company said that it will invest a record $1.5 billion on research and development this year, marking a new record. TSMC’s R&D spending totalled just over $1 billion in 2010, it hit $1.36 billion last year and it will continue to go up over the next few years. The company is speeding up 16nm and 10nm development and it hopes to start building 16nm FinFET chips next year.

Although some optimists were hoping to see 20nm parts from TSMC by the end of this year, CEO Morris Chang said the company will start volume production of 20nm products in 2014, reports Digitimes.

However, TSMC will not ditch 28nm anytime soon. In fact, it is still expanding 28nm capacity and it hopes to increase capacity to 100,000 300mm wafers by the end of the year. Chang said TSMC will expand its 28nm capacity threefold in 2013 over 2012.