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AMD starts sampling copper whoppers

Spitfires, Mustangs to fly out of Dresden

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A report in EE Times said yesterday that AMD's CEO, Jerry Sanders III, has confirmed that its Dresden fabrication plant 30 has started shipping samples of x86 microprocessors using the copper interconnect process. Sanders is reported as saying that his firm will turn in its first quarter next week with turnover of $1 billion, with sales improving because of sales of its Athlon processor and Flash memories. Yesterday, AMD's share price rose sharply on this news. AMD will produce its Thunderbird version of the Athlon initially using 0.18 micron copper technology from its Dresden fab, but, later on this year, that technology will be migrated to a 0.13 process. According to the reports, AMD managed to produce stable versions of both synchronous memory and microprocessors only a week or so ago. Thunderbird will include cache on die, with chips expected to be available as early as June. Meanwhile, a report from an AMD conference posted on Motley Fool has suggested that the up-and-coming Spitfire processor, named apparently after a motorcar rather than the British fighter plane in the Second World War, will see off both the K6-2+ and the K6-III microprocessor. This report claims that AMD will keep both Slot A and its up-and-coming Socket A packaging going until the end of this year. The same report suggests that AMD's up and coming Mustang chip will have on-die cache of as much as 2Mb. These chips will be aimed at the workstation and server markets. The Mustang is named after the motorcar rather than the aeroplane. As reported here before, Alpha Processing Inc (API) will produce chipsets for multiprocessing AMD microprocessors. AMD itself will only produce two-way SMP (symmetric multiprocessing) chipsets. Both Spitfires and Thunderbirds will require special methods for cooling the microprocessor, according to this latter report. ® Related Stories AMD and its Dresden Sand Pit I AMD and its Dresden Sand Pit II

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