In October last year, it became clear that the Korean company SK Hynix is ready to introduce lithography with ultrahard ultraviolet radiation (EUV) in the production of RAM chips. It was assumed that SK Hynix by the beginning of 2021 will master the release of DRAM on the 1α nm manufacturing process, and even the pandemic did not force the company to abandon its plans.
According to The Elec, intentions to master the mass production of RAM using the 1α-nm process technology using EUV lithography remained valid, and now SK Hynix even mentions the memory designation for this generation – Canopus, in honor of the brightest star in the constellation Kiel. Mass production of such a memory will be established next year, preparations are underway. In the second half of the year, in addition, SK Hynix intends to increase the share of RAM with technical processes 1y and 1z nm to 40% of the production program.
For SK Hynix, the Canopus project is of great importance, as it will determine whether the company will be able to produce RAM chips using EUV lithography at a reasonable cost. It is the high costs that scare Micron away from such a move, which does not consider it necessary to follow the example of SK Hynix until 2023, at least. The high initial costs of mastering EUV in mass production are further offset by lower operating costs, since fewer process steps and equipment are required to make the microcircuit.
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