First EUV light marks key milestone for Intel in Europe
Intel’s first European high-volume EUV scanner, located at its Fab 34 facility in Ireland, generated its 13.5 nanometre wavelength light for the first time last week.
Earlier this year Fab 34 in Ireland took delivery of its first EUV lithography system, a key enabler of Intel 4 process technology. The system, made by ASML, is probably one of the most complicated pieces of machinery humans have ever built.
Since its arrival, local teams have been working through the installation phase and last week reached an important moment as the EUV scanner generated its 13.5 nanometre wavelength light for the first time in Ireland.
"This is a key milestone on the path towards high volume production of Intel 4 technology and is the first time a high volume EUV scanner will be used in Europe," Intel writes in an update.
This is not a small feat, so in order to illustrate just how massive of an undertaking this installation has been, let us just go over what such an installation entails. The EUV system in its entirety consists of 100,000 parts, 3,000 cables, 40,000 bolts and more than a mile of hosing. All and all it took 18 months of design and construction activity to prepare the Fab 34 building to receive the machine.
"Following its arrival in Leixlip, the journey to generating first light has been an incredibly complex one that relied upon the intricate alignment of multiple factors. From the build of the scanner itself to the qualification of facility systems and the connection to utilities, it has taken a huge, combined team effort to reach this point," the company writes.
The company continues to state that this significant moment ushers in Intel 4 technology, which has already passed its crucial manufacturing readiness milestone by 2H 2022 for products like Meteor Lake in 2023.