Updates to this story
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) has announced plans to build another mega fab with production capacity in the region of 100,000 300mm wafers per month.
It is expected that construction of the plant will begin in 2014, and will be the fourth in a series of large fabs which are at various stages of development for the firm.
When all four are completed it has been projected that they will be able to manufacture more than 600,000 wafers a month in total at a cost of $10bn, which is 1.5 times the production capacity of the current output of all its 300mm fabs combined.
The new fab, codenamed Fab 16, which is the fourth in a series of fabs that have been announced over the last few months, is expected to be built in the Central Taiwan Science Park where it will be the second of the company’s factories to focus its attention on the 28nm process.
The fifth-phase construction of the first of the factories announced has already begun pilot production in the final quarter of 2010 at Hsinchu Science Park. Meanwhile the fourth-phase construction of the second factory will enter into volume production in 2011. The third factory began its first phase construction on yesterday at the Central Taiwan Science Park and will start a pilot run in early 2012.
It is now being forecast that the construction of four factories of such size will assist TSMC in moving further ahead of both Samsung and Globalfoundries in silicon foundry competition, which follows analyst concerns earlier this year over a monopoly by the end of the decade.