Advanced heterogeneous integration is a method of streamlining and improving the process of integrating separately manufactured chip components into a single assembly level. Arguably key to the refinement of the chip production industry, companies that master advanced heterogeneous integration can significantly improve the efficiency of production processes and performance and do more with less. Samsung Foundry aims to do just that, as explained by Moonsoo Kang, Head of Business Development at Samsung Foundry, at the 2022 Samsung Foundry Forum (SFF).
Kang used his presentation at the forum to lay out in detail the company’s roadmap for its advanced heterogeneous integration solutions. With a message rooted in Samsung’s ‘Beyond Moore’ approach, Kang also gave visitors a deep dive into the advanced package technologies that are powering new innovations in horizontal and vertical integration: I-Cube, H-Cube and X-Cube.
Prior Approaches: ‘More Moore’ and ‘More Than Moore’
At the opening of his talk, Kang revisited the integration approaches that dominated previous eras of chip development, namely the ‘More Moore’ and ‘More Than Moore’ approaches. Both are named in reference to engineer Gordon Moore’s 1965 prediction that every two years would see a doubling of the transistor count on chips, which is also known as ‘Moore’s Law.’
The ‘More Moore’ approach, Kang explained, sought to relentlessly scale down transistors and interconnects on silicon and, by doing so, enabled a revolution in computing and electronics. However, as demand for computing power has skyrocketed – necessitating more transistors in the process – the ‘More Moore’ approach reached its limits. Fitting as many functions as possible within a single chip can be economical and practical. However, as the industry has reached the maximum reticle size that can be printed at once using photolithography methods – which use light to add materials onto substrates – scaling alone cannot be relied on as the sole solution for high performing chips.
The ‘More Than Moore’ approach, by contrast, seeks to create specialized and diverse chip architectures to best suit the wide array of functions required. Effective, certainly, but not always economical.
Despite their apparent differences, ‘More Moore’ and ‘More Than Moore’ have, Kang argued, complimentary potential. With this in mind, Kang and the teams at Samsung Foundry have been pursuing a third way: ‘Beyond Moore.’ This approach seeks to achieve the best of both worlds, and the key to doing so, Kang explained, is advanced heterogeneous integration.
‘Beyond Moore’ and the Role of Advanced Heterogeneous Integration