Intel’s Chinese fab to use 65 nanometer tech

The fabrication plant Intel is building at Dalian in China will start operation in 2010, but it won’t be using cutting edge process technology.

According to Taiwanese wire Digitimes, the plant will use 65 nanometer technology – that’s a generation behind Intel’s 45 nanometer tech. And, later this year, Intel will start migrating its leading edge fabs to 32 nanometer process technology.

The reason for using 65 nanometer technology is because the US government approves this for export, so the fab – to be called Fab 68 – will be a workaday operation. The wire quotes manager Kirby Jefferson as saying it will make chips for ultra slim notebooks.

The building will be finished in the third quarter of this year and Intel will plug in the equipment during the fourth quarter, meaning that production at the fab will start in 2010.

Which begs the question about how many chips for ultra slim notebooks will use older Intel technology. Intel rarely answers questions about yields and about product mixes. As many people remain ignorant about how the “brain of a computer” is built, perhaps that doesn’t matter too much.

The full Digitimes story is here.