"Inside a “clean room” within ASML’s sprawling campus in the Dutch town of
Veldhoven, dozens of men and women in hazmat-style suits are breathing air that
is 10,000-times more purified than in an operating theatre.
They are working on the first prototype of the chip toolmaker’s newest product:
the latest generation of extreme ultraviolet photolithography machines that
will be used to “print” transistors almost as small as the diameter of a human
chromosome on to sheets of silicon to make a semiconductor. This EUV machine is
due to ship to Intel this year at a cost of more than €350mn.
Without ASML’s lithography machines, products as ubiquitous as Apple’s iPhones
or as sophisticated as the Nvidia chips that power ChatGPT would be impossible.
Only three companies in the world — Intel, Samsung and TSMC — are capable of
manufacturing the advanced processors that make these products possible; all
rely on ASML’s cutting-edge equipment to do so.
The innovations achieved by ASML have ensured that transistors have continued
to shrink, thereby making chips more powerful. The pace of progress in the
technology industry over the past five decades has been made possible by
exponential increases in semiconductor transistor density."
Via Future Crunch
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics