SK hynix to Build $3.87 Billion Memory Packaging Fab in the U.S. for HBM4 and Beyond

SK hynix to Build $3.87 Billion Memory Packaging Fab in the U.S. for HBM4 and Beyond

SK Hynix announced plans this week to build its state-of-the-art memory packaging facility in West Lafayette, Indiana. The move can be considered a milestone for both the memory maker and the US, as it is the first modern memory packaging facility in the country and the company's first major manufacturing operation in the US. The facility will be used to build next-generation high-bandwidth memory (HBM) stacks when it begins operations in 2028. In addition, SK hynix agreed to work on R&D projects with Purdue University.

SK hynix said, “We are excited to be the first in the industry to develop a state-of-the-art packaging facility for AI products in the United States to strengthen supply chain flexibility and develop the local semiconductor ecosystem. will help.” CEO Kwak Noh Jung.

One of the most advanced chip packaging facility ever

The facility will handle the assembly of HBM's known Good Stacked Dies (KGSDs), which consist of multiple memory devices stacked on a base die. Additionally, it will be used to develop the next generations of HBM and hence a packaging R&D line. However, the plant will not manufacture the DRAMs itself, and will likely source them from SK hynix's fabs in South Korea.

The plant will require SK hynix to invest $3.87 billion, making it one of the world's most advanced semiconductor packaging facilities. Meanwhile, SK Hanks held an investment agreement ceremony with representatives from Indiana State, Purdue University, and the US government, which identifies the parties involved financially in the project, but this week's event It is not known if SK Hanks will receive any money from the US government. under the CHIPS Act or other funding measures.

The cost of this facility is significantly higher than packaging facilities built by other major players in the industry, such as ASE Group, Intel, and TSMC, which highlights how significant an investment this is for SK hnix. Is. In fact, $3.87 billion more than Intel, TSMC and Samsung's advanced packaging CapEx budgets in 2023, based on projections. Yule Intelligence.

Given that the fab will come online in 2028, based on SK hynix's product roadmap we would expect it to be at least partially used to assemble the HBM4 and HBM4E stacks. Especially, since HBM4 and HBM4E are set on the stack. Feature 2048-bit interface.Their packaging process will be significantly more complex than existing 1024-bit HBM3/HBM3E packaging and will require the use of more advanced equipment, which is why it is set to be more expensive than some existing advanced packaging facilities. Due to the highly complex 2048-bit interface, many chip designers who are going to use HBM4/HBM4E are expected to integrate it directly into their processors using hybrid bonding and not using silicon interposers. will do Unfortunately, it is unclear whether SK hynix's facility will be able to offer such a service.

HBM is primarily used for AI and HPC applications, so it is strategically important to have it manufactured in the U.S. Meanwhile, the actual memory dedicated DRAM fabs will still need to be manufactured elsewhere.

Contributed by Purdue University

In addition to support provided by state and local governments, SK hynix chose to establish its new facility in West Lafayette, Indiana, to collaborate with Purdue University as well as Purdue's Berk Nanotechnology Center on R&D projects. What, in which modern packaging and heterogeneous integration.

SK hynix plans to work in partnership with Purdue University and Ivy Tech Community College to create training programs and multidisciplinary degree courses aimed at developing a skilled workforce and at its state-of-the-art memory packaging facility and R&D. Establishing a continuous stream of emerging capabilities for operations.

“SK hynix is ​​the global pioneer and dominant market leader in memory chips for AI,” said Purdue University President Ming Chiang. “This transformational investment reflects our state's and university's tremendous strength in semiconductors, hardware AI, and the hard-tech corridor. It's a great way to complete our nation's digital economy supply chain through advanced packaging chips.” A monumental moment. Located in Purdue Research Park. The largest facility of its kind at an American university will thrive and succeed through innovation.”

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