May 15, 2007 – Spansion Inc. and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (TSMC) have expanded their existing partnership to extend development of Spansion’s MirrorBit flash memory technology down to 40nm and below.
Under terms of the deal (which did not disclose financial considerations or timelines), TSMC will make the processes “production-proven” and ramp them to volume output; Spansion will use variations of the technology to expand into new applications.
“Collaborating with Spansion expands our technology portfolio and increases our participation in the fast-growing Flash memory business,” said Rick Tsai, president and CEO of TSMC, in a statement.
TSMC already makes MirrorBit chips for Spansion, with a 90nm (300mm) process technology version set to ramp to volume output sometime in mid-2007. TSMC has been making 110nm-based MirrorBit flash devices for Spansion since last year. The deal could boost TSMC’s flash memory output to account for 5%-7% of total revenues this year, and double its flash output to ~20,000 wafers/month, notes the Taiwan Economic News.
The capacity deal with TSMC augments Spansion’s own 90nm internal capability at its Fab25 facility in Austin, TX, which is in the midst of a transition to 65nm process capabilities. while Spansion’s SP1 facility in Aizu-Wakamatsu, Japan, is being converted to 45nm capacity in mid-2008, while its JV3 facility there already produces 110nm MirrorBit devices.