Intel unveils breakthrough in chip technology

October 9, 2001 | Source: Financial Times

Intel has developed a new “bumpless” chip packaging technology that it says will enable it to build microprocessors with more than a billion transistors, compared with the 42 million now available on its current high-end Pentium 4 chip.
“Bumpless” packaging serves to eliminate the use of solder “bumps” that connect tiny wires to a chip.

“The problem with the use of bumps is that as chips become ever more complex, there is a risk that they will touch each other and thus will short-circuit the device,” Koushik Banerjee, a leading Intel researcher explained.

With bumpless packaging, Intel can create very powerful microprocessors and at the same time reduce the electrical power consumption and reduce the problem of overheating.

The technology could also be used to combine several microprocessors in an extremely thin format, creating new opportunities for different types of computer products. Intel says the bumpless packaging will not be launched in commercial products for at least three to four years.