On Friday (24th US Eastern time), Intel officially broke ground on two new chip plants in Arizona, which will produce chips for external contract manufacturers, in order to strengthen the competition between Intel and TSMC.
The two new chip plants, named Fab 52 and Fab 62, will be built at Intel's Ocotillo campus in Chandler, Arizona, at a cost of $20 billion, bringing the total number of Intel factories in the Ocotillo campus to six. Intel has invested more than $50 billion in Arizona since it began making chips in the state 40 years ago.
It is reported that these factories will use Intel's state-of-the-art chip production process, which Intel hopes to regain its position as a leader in chip manufacturing in 2025.
Intel is still one of the largest chipmakers, but its technological advantage has been replaced by contract manufacturers such as TSMC and Samsung.
According to reports, two new plants in Arizona are expected to be fully operational in 2024, not only to support the production of Intel's internal products, but also to provide services to external customers. Intel has long been making its own chips, but the company has begun to transform itself into an outside company that makes chips.
Intel said this year that it would use its expanded manufacturing capacity in the US to win over customers such as Apple and Qualcomm, two of TSMC's top customers.
"We want to be more flexible to the supply chain," Pat Geisinger (Pat Gelsinger), Intel's chief executive, told media at a White House chip-themed conference earlier this week. "as the only company in the United States that can produce the world's most advanced lithography processes, we will make great strides forward."
Mr Geissinger said it was too early to say how much capacity of the new plant would be left to outside customers. He said the factories would produce "thousands" of wafers a week. Wafers are the wafers that make chips, and each wafer can be made into hundreds or even thousands of chips.
Intel rival TSMC is also reported to have bought land in (Phoenix), Phoenix, to build its first American park not far from where Intel is located. TSMC plans to build up to six chip plants in Phoenix.
Intel's Geissinger said Intel plans to announce the location of a new US campus by the end of the year, which will eventually have eight chip factories.