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Toshiba Makes Major Advances Toward 45 Nanometer Process System LSI

16 June, 2004

Develops World's First System LSI technology for 45nm Generation

TOKYO -- Toshiba Corporation today unveiled a high performance metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET) and advanced multi-layer wiring technology, both elemental technologies for 45-nanometer (nm) system LSI process technology two generations in advance of today's 90nm process technology.

Next-generation broadband digital consumer electronics will rely on high-performance LSI, particularly System-On-Chip (SoC) devices with extremely high levels of integration, to process huge volumes of data in real time. However, achieving this requires advances in finer process technologies and overcoming the twin hurdles of improving performance while reducing power consumption. Both rely on reduction of power supply voltage, which also requires a thinner transistor gate oxide film. But thinner film is more susceptible to current leakage, which degrades performance.

Toshiba found a solution in a new gate-oxide technology and an optimized gate oxide film and has applied this to a high performance MOSFET with lower current leakage. The company has also succeeded in developing new multi-layer wiring technology, essential for the dense wiring of highly integrated SoC. This new technology optimizes wiring parameters in terms of operating frequency and power consumption suited to 45nm generation products.

These new elemental technologies will support Toshiba in advancing development of 45nm generation system LSI.

Full details of the new technologies were presented at the 2004 Symposium on VLSI Technology held from June 15-17 in Hawaii.

In addition to the elemental technologies announced today, Toshiba is working with Sony group on 45-nanometer process technologies for next generation system LSI, including embedded memory technology.

New technologies

1) MOSFET (metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor):
Improved device performance and lower power consumption requires reduction of the power supply voltage. Such an approach requires a thinner film of oxide, which is more prone to current leakage. This has proved to be a major issue.

Toshiba's new MOSFET has an ultra-thin gate oxide film. The EOT (equivalent oxide thickness) is less than 1nm thick and 1.5-order reduction in current leakage is realized from conventional SiON film. The new film was achieved by optimizing the oxide film process technology, and it solves the problem of performance deterioration due to increased leakage current with a thinner oxide film. The MOSFET achieves superior characteristics: a drive current of 820uA/um has been obtained for an NMOSET, and of 300uA/um for a PMOSFET at 0.85V (Ioff=50nA/um).

2) Multi Layer Wiring:
Toshiba has found the optimized wiring parameters in terms of operating frequency and power consumption for 45 nm generation system LSI. The new technology demonstrates a 130nm pitch of the first metal layer, a 72% shrink from the 65nm generation.

Note: 1 nanometer = one billionth of a meter

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