Intel Showcases Ivy Bridge With Tri-Gate Upgrade

Intel announced a few hours ago that it is working on a brand new 3D manufacturing process called 3-D Tri-Gate, which will allow it to deliver 37 per cent higher performance and by doing so extending Moore's Law.

Speaking via video link from Intel's headquarters in Santa Clara, Bill Holt, Intel Senior Vice President, explained how the new process would supersede the existing planar-2D in the short term and allow the company to create a new generation of low power processors.

Intel Fellow, Mark Bohr, confirmed that 22nm Tri-gate parts would be performing up to 37 per cent faster compared to a 32nm planar transistor, presumably at similar clock speeds.

Bohr however did not elaborate as to what part of the performance gain is down to the die shrink and how much Intel gains from moving to 3-D Tri-Gate technology.

It did say however that the move to the new process would add only around two to three per cent to the cost of the silicon wafer.

Tri-Gate was first disclosed by Intel by in 2002 and although the concept has been mastered in the laboratory, the company said that moving to high-volume manufacturing was the biggest challenge.

The first product to use 3-D Tri-Gate should be Ivy Bridge, the successor of Sandy Bridge which was announced at CES in January 2011; Ivy Bridge should be launched early next year depending on market conditions with Intel saying that it "is slated for high-volume production readiness by the end of this year".