In-keeping with semiconductor industry fast-track construction techniques and schedules, Toshiba and manufacturing partner, SanDisk have officially opened their third 300mm wafer NAND flash fabrication facility at Toshiba's Yokkaichi Operations in Mie Prefecture, Japan, dubbed Fab 5. The JV partners said that volume production had started in July 2011, having started construction of the new facility in July, last year.
Initial production was said to be at the 24nm node first wafer outs in August, 2011. In time, the fab will transition to more advanced process generations, starting with recently announced 19nm technology.
According to Toshiba, Fab 5 incorporates advanced earthquake-absorbing structures and integrates multiple power compensation techniques for protection against unexpected disruptions.
LED lighting and power-saving manufacturing equipment will support the fab in securing Toshiba’s goal of 12% less CO2 emissions than Fab 4. A wafer transportation system links the facility with Fabs 3 and 4 to support efficient manufacturing.
As is typical in the early phase of production ramp at a new facility, Toshiba and SanDisk did not disclose the wafer start capacity of the facility, its largest built 300mm fab to date.
Typically, Toshiba ramps the facility in phases due to the size and cost of adding capacity, which can take several years and dependent on market demand.
However, Fab 5 is considerably larger than Fab 4, which was one of the largest 300mm fabs ever built with a wafer start capacity of over 230,000wspm.
Outline of Fab 5 at Yokkaichi Operations
Structure of building: 2-Story steel frame concrete, five floors
Building area: Approximately 38,000m2
Floor area: Approximately 187,000m2
Start of construction: July 2010
Building completion: March 2011
Start of volume production: July 2011
Caption: Fab 5 is the first building at the lower-edge of the photo.