The world’s largest chip manufacturer will produce advanced 4-nanometer chips at its Arizona facility when it opens in 2024.
- With prompting from Apple, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) now plans to produce more advanced chips at its new facility, Bloomberg reports.
- TSMC is constructing a $12-billion plant in Arizona.
- No official announcement has been made, but the updated information is expected to be included during a ceremony next Tuesday when President Joe Biden is present in Phoenix.
- Previously, the plant was preparing to produce 5-nanometer chips, however by 2024, these chips will be outdated.
- A different facility planned to be constructed nearby will be fitted to produce even more advanced 3-nanometer chips.
Why it’s news
Since the chip shortage that occurred during the pandemic, U.S. officials have been coaxing chip manufacturers to the U.S. in order to increase national security and less reliance on foreign chipmakers.
Semiconductor chips are a vital part of nearly every technology in use—ranging from electric vehicles to cell phones to microwaves.
Previously, TSMC had planned to produce 20,000 chips monthly, though these plans may be altered now that more advanced chips will be made. Apple plans to use around one-third of the facility’s product.
Apple CEO Tim Cook had previously mentioned to employees that the company planned to source chips from the Arizona plant. This is another move in Apple’s attempt to diversify its manufacturing rather than relying on Chinese facilities. Supply-chain disruptions and delays caused by China’s zero-COVID policy have prompted Apple to seek additional suppliers.
Backing up a bit
TSMC is looking for a location for a new multibillion-dollar factory and its eyes are reportedly set on Arizona, The Wall Street Journal reports.
The company has already committed to another chip factory just north of Phoenix. The new facility is expected to be nearby. Total investment is expected to be similar to the other facility which cost around $12 billion.
This new facility would be responsible for manufacturing 3-nanometer transistors. These miniscule chips would be the smallest and fastest processors currently available.
Whether or not TSMC will set up this manufacturing facility in Arizona isn’t officially decided, however. Currently, the company is working on a new building that will function as a second fabrication site for its current facility in Arizona. While the company is considering making this the site of more advanced manufacturing, no official decision has been made.