News Intel Foundry Services Wins US Defense Contract for Chips with 18A Node

Giroro

Honorable
Jan 22, 2015
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If Intel is out there saying their node naming has nothing whatsoever to do with transistor size, then we should not be pretending that 18A is going to be "Angstrom class".
Although, I'm curious which misleading branding Intel switches to when their investors learn that the made-up numbers are smaller than silicon's Van der Waals radius.
Intel Quantum?
 
May 21, 2021
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If Intel is out there saying their node naming has nothing whatsoever to do with transistor size, then we should not be pretending that 18A is going to be "Angstrom class".
Although, I'm curious which misleading branding Intel switches to when their investors learn that the made-up numbers are smaller than silicon's Van der Waals radius.
Intel Quantum?
Intel infinitesimal? Hahaha
 

InvalidError

Titan
Moderator
If Intel is out there saying their node naming has nothing whatsoever to do with transistor size
The renaming was done primarily for marketing purposes to align Intel's branding with other foundries based on process density.

Neither TSMC nor Samsung 'nm' numbers have any direct relation to physical sizes either. These numbers are nothing more than relative densities between the fabs' processes based on the company's own internal rules which they may change at any time.
 

Groveling_Wyrm

Distinguished
The burning question given Intel's recent slip-up history: how many years late is it going to be? Even if we accept Intels process renaming to reset the clock on how far behind its own calendar it has fallen, it is still about two years behind competition process-wise.
This is the normal for the U.S. defense industry. Look at a lot of their contracts. Missed deadlines, cost overruns, unexplainable price changing and gouging. Happens all the time. I would say that this won't even be reported when the deadline hits.
 

PapaCrazy

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The burning question given Intel's recent slip-up history: how many years late is it going to be? Even if we accept Intels process renaming to reset the clock on how far behind its own calendar it has fallen, it is still about two years behind competition process-wise.
It's been frustrating as a gamer to have seen such little innovation from Intel the last few years. Then the chip shortage started happening, and I'm seeing the whole world become dependent on 3rd party fabs in parts of the world that have become security concerns, I'm seeing the car market fluctuate in ways it never has, delays of new product releases, cuts in production, and losses of jobs across the entire economy. This whole situation has gotten way out of hand, and my humble little PC concerns are the least of the global problem now.

It may seem unfair to lay the entire chip shortage and corresponding market disruption, the massive inflation and booming of the scalper market, squarely on Intel's shoulder. Yet, had they had enough foresight (or atleast as much as the Asian fabs did), and took time to stop spending their executive bonuses, they should have seen this rabid need for silicon coming. And their responsibility wasn't just to fill their greedy corporate pockets, but provide a secure, reliable, and plentiful North American source for silicon.

So this contract, and whatever flawed attempts Intel makes to catch up, are both pitiful and also absolutely necessary. I have been taking every verbal or written shot I could at Intel the last few years. But for the sake of economic stability and security we should all be rooting for their fabs.
 
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Findecanor

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Apr 7, 2015
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BTW. The unit Ångström is spelled Å, as in 18Å, but hey, this section of the computing industry hasn't yet figured out how to type × or µ either ... :rolleyes:
 
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Co BIY

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Jun 18, 2015
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It's been frustrating as a gamer to have seen such little innovation from Intel the last few years. Then the chip shortage started happening, and I'm seeing the whole world become dependent on 3rd party fabs in parts of the world that have become security concerns, I'm seeing the car market fluctuate in ways it never has, delays of new product releases, cuts in production, and losses of jobs across the entire economy. This whole situation has gotten way out of hand, and my humble little PC concerns are the least of the global problem now.

It may seem unfair to lay the entire chip shortage and corresponding market disruption, the massive inflation and booming of the scalper market, squarely on Intel's shoulder. Yet, had they had enough foresight (or atleast as much as the Asian fabs did), and took time to stop spending their executive bonuses, they should have seen this rabid need for silicon coming. And their responsibility wasn't just to fill their greedy corporate pockets, but provide a secure, reliable, and plentiful North American source for silicon.

So this contract, and whatever flawed attempts Intel makes to catch up, are both pitiful and also absolutely necessary. I have been taking every verbal or written shot I could at Intel the last few years. But for the sake of economic stability and security we should all be rooting for their fabs.

I think you give Intel too little credit. With competitive pressure they have produced very competitive chips at reasonable prices, produced some very solid SSD storage products and plenty of cutting edge advancements like optane that cost them money. They also took large risks in keeping their fab capability when others cut and ran from that side of the business. I would say they did so because they had the foresight for demand that you claim they lack.

Are they running as well as TSMC on the engineering side for the last two years - NO but they have been selling everything they can make, and that's a lot. Their products are available and not vaporware.

Inflation has nothing to do with Intel or the Semi-conductor market as a whole. In fact it is a leading sector that makes better things cheaper continuously.

Governments throwing Billions and Trillions around like a rapper throwing cash in a music video is behind inflation.

Their "Greedy Corporate Pockets" are actually the stockholders who are much more likely to be large retirement plans investing to fund the retirements of average people than just a few "fat cats".
 

Joseph_138

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I wonder how long it will be before a group of Intel employees files a letter of protest with their bosses about the government contract, like they did at other tech companies, and the cancel culture swoops down on them.
 

escksu

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Aug 8, 2019
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If Intel is out there saying their node naming has nothing whatsoever to do with transistor size, then we should not be pretending that 18A is going to be "Angstrom class".
Although, I'm curious which misleading branding Intel switches to when their investors learn that the made-up numbers are smaller than silicon's Van der Waals radius.
Intel Quantum?
Transistor size is only applicable during planar transistor days. After the introduction of finfet, process nodes has nothing to do with transistor size.
 

jkflipflop98

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I wonder how long it will be before a group of Intel employees files a letter of protest with their bosses about the government contract, like they did at other tech companies, and the cancel culture swoops down on them.
Being as 40-50% of the employees are ex-military personnel, that probably isn't going to happen.
 

PapaCrazy

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I think you give Intel too little credit. With competitive pressure they have produced very competitive chips at reasonable prices, produced some very solid SSD storage products and plenty of cutting edge advancements like optane that cost them money. They also took large risks in keeping their fab capability when others cut and ran from that side of the business. I would say they did so because they had the foresight for demand that you claim they lack.

Are they running as well as TSMC on the engineering side for the last two years - NO but they have been selling everything they can make, and that's a lot. Their products are available and not vaporware.

Inflation has nothing to do with Intel or the Semi-conductor market as a whole. In fact it is a leading sector that makes better things cheaper continuously.

Governments throwing Billions and Trillions around like a rapper throwing cash in a music video is behind inflation.

Their "Greedy Corporate Pockets" are actually the stockholders who are much more likely to be large retirement plans investing to fund the retirements of average people than just a few "fat cats".
Before Ryzen, Intel had no real competition and rather unreasonable prices (particularly for HEDT/server). My first SSD, an Intel 320 series, suffered from the 8mb bug - but I won't hold that against them. I just don't think their storage solutions or Optane (which abandoned the consumer market) were particularly compelling or relevant.

AMD, Apple, Nvidia, and even Google have demonstrated the ease at which a chip can be designed, if the right engineers are hired. It's fabrication (and required node shrinks to meet design specs) that represents the greatest obstacle, long term commitment, and therefore opportunity for profit. I won't praise Intel for the mere fact they realized this. and resisted throwing away billions already spent on R&D.

You have some fair point regarding inflation, but the crazy explosion of prices within tech (and corresponding markets like automobiles) are very specifically tied to a shortage of silicon.

There might be a ton of average Joes invested in Intel stock, but they are not making the decisions. Guys like Brian Krzanich were making the decisions. and I stand by my characterization of their former board.

Anyway, I really didn't mean for any of my posts to be Intel-bashing. Quite the opposite really, I thought I was being quite positive. But supporting Intel also means being honest about their recent past and market trajectory. They are operating at a fraction of their true capability. I say this out of respect.
 

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