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Marking the debut of EUV-enabled high-volume semiconductor manufacturing on European soil, Intel has officially kicked off manufacturing of its Intel 4 node at Fab 34 in Leixlip, Ireland. The Intel 4 fabrication technology (which would have been called 7nm in Intel’s previous nomenclature) is currently used to produce the compute tiles for Meteor Lake processors, which will end up in laptops and other compact computing devices. Next year, the facility’s focus will shift to server-class Xeon processors produced on the Intel 3 node.
The debut also marks a step in Intel’s effort to regain market leadership in the industry by 2024 or 2025. To this end, the company embarked on a journey to introduce five new nodes in four years, starting in 2021. Intel 4 is the second in this succession, with Intel 3 appearing to be lined up as well.
There have been delays, but Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger is content. “I’d give us a passing grade, two and a half years into the journey,” he told Bloomberg ahead of the ceremony at Fab 34. “My product machine is, you know, I won’t say it’s world class, but it’s no longer broken.”