Samsung, with the 11LPP production line, which stands for 11 nm Low PowerPlus, has placed an intermediate step between the extensive 14 nm production and the still young but expensive 10 nm production. It should be an option for mid-range as well as high-end smartphones.
11LPP is a mixture of 14LPP and 10LPP
Samsung will be able to achieve an approximately 10 percent smaller area, but also 15 percent more power than the 14 nm production with this step. This is close to the 10nm step, which allows even more in detail, but is also more difficult and expensive to manufacture. The 10 nm process is currently to be reserved for flagship products such as the current Galaxy-S and Note series around the Exynos-9-SoC and its successors. The other super-class models, but above all mid-range models and their Exynos SoCs of the 7000 series, this production might be appropriate.
In the first half of next year, the new interim step 11LPP will be available.
7 nm with EUV in the timetable for the end of 2018
For the second half of 2018, Samsung is continuing to develop the first 7-nm chips using EUV lithography. At the beginning not all layers are exposed with EUV, but some of the critical layers could benefit from the use of the new laser. The 7 nm manufacturing process is used as a pilot phase. EUV lithography is to be used more extensively from 5 nm production. According to own data Samsung has since 2014 hitherto scarcely 200.00 wafers with EUV exposed, with standardized SRAM cells with 256 MBit is thus a yield of 80 per cent. However, since SoCs are more complex, the production needs another year to go to production.
Samsung plans with 10, 8, 7, 6, 5 and 4 nm
Already in May of this year, Samsung had released a five-year plan, which shows not only the most important steps in production around 10 and 7 nm, but also the other planned intermediate solutions. Thus, at 8, 6, it will also be 5 nm, before Gate All Around FET will be used for the first time with 4LPP. According to the current state, however, this will not happen until 2020/2021.