Chip manufacturter Intel and the Italian government have selected Vigasio near Verona, in the north of Italy, as the site for a €4.5 billion chiplet assembly factory, according to Reuters.
The government in Rome is expected to provide up to 40 percent of the investment by providing public money and special terms to Intel on labour and energy costs. Operation of the assembly plant is expected to start at some point between 2025 and 2027.
Intel has been negotiating with the Italian government for several months on a deal that would create 1500 jobs directly and 3500 jobs in the supply chain.
Chiplet assembly refers to making of components from multiple die, so that each can be made in semiconductor process that is optimal to its functionality. This would allow memories, digital logic, analog, RF and I/O circuits to be assembled in a 3D arrangement. However, this novel style of manufacturing is mainly used for high performance computing and is yet to reach the mainstream. As standardization increases it could start to find use in such sectors as automotive and industrial electronics.
The move is part of pledge from Intel to spend €80 billion (about US$80 billion) in Europe over several years. The company has already committed to building two wafer fabs in Magdeburg, Germany at a cost of €17 billion, to invest substantially in its existing fab in Leixlip, Ireland, and is in the process of buying Tower Semiconductor, which shares a fab with STMicroelectronics in Milan.
Vigasio is the preferred option from a shortlist of two sites, Reuters said. The other is in the northwestern Piedmont region. One of the advantages of Vigasio is that it is well-connected by road and rail to Magdeburg in Germany. Other sites had been considered in Lombardy, Apulia and Sicily, the report said.
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