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    Fab 8 was the first production division of Intel, established outside the USA in 1985. Fab 8 is a relatively small plant — both in terms of area (Fab 8 cleanroom area was just 4500 m2 as well as employees (about 500 people). Fab 8 was a consolidating plant — it manufactured all legacy products from Intel. It offers six process technologies (see the table), which is very difficult in technological terms. Hence a wide product line — over 100 products, manufactured in small quantities.

    Process technologyElement size,
    micron
    Number of metal layers Number of poly-Si layers Voltage
    P601.2
    0.4, flash
    1.0, periphery
    3
    2
    5V, 12V vpp
    P652
    0.6
    4
    2
    3.3V
    P653
    0.6
    4
    1
    3.3V
    P650
    0.8
    2
    1
    5V
    P648
    1.0
    2
    1
    5V
    P629
    1.0
    2
    2
    5V, 12V vpp

     


     

     

    Fab 8 manufactured a lot of legacy products. The main consumer of these products is the automotive industry. Fab 8 is the only Intel's plant that manufactures automotive products — Anti-lock Brake Systems (ABS) and engine controls. The clients are leading world manufacturers  Bosch, Ford, Siemens, and Motorola. It also manufacturers solutions that combine microcontrollers and flash memory. In this case, the consumer of such solutions, called Electronic Stability Program (ESP), is Bosch.

    The second type of products was the 51-series (8-bit) and 96-series (16-bit)  microcontrollers, which are used in commercial and industry solutions — Point of Sales, industrial control, medical equipment, telecom devices. Such products are ordered both by OEM companies (Nortel, Lucent, Ericsson) as well as distributors (Arrow, Avent, Hamilton).

    Strange as it may seem, the next line of products is x86 processors of the three generations — 186, 386, and 486. These processors, manufactured by this plant in large quantities in the past (for example, Fab 8 manufactured up to 50% of the total volume of 386 processors) and being the heart of personal computers, are now manufactured in small quantities and are used in POS, modems, GPS solutions due to their reliability and utility. That's why consumers of x86 products from this plant are the leading companies - IBM, NEC, and Garmlin.

    And finally, we shouldn't forget about Intel's presence on the RISC-processors market. i960-series processors in several modifications with various performance levels are used in network solutions, telecom equipment, and printers. Nokia, Cisco, Alcatel, and HP consume RISC-solutions from Intel.

     

     



     

    For its twenty-year history, Fab 8 passed three main stages — from manufacturing processors to manufacturing chipsets and automotive microcontrollers. Nevertheless, Fab 8 was not just a manufacturing division of Intel. Approximately seven years ago, the next evolution stage took shape — Fab 8 management initiated the search for new unusual technological solutions. These days Fab 8 is the main and only R&D center of unique disruptive technologies, such as MEMS and semiconductor photonics.


    . What is MEMS? This abbreviation stands for Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems: "Micro" means small dimensions of elements (about 0.5-1 micron, but not smaller — this is one of the reasons to design such devices exactly in Fab 8); "Electro-Mechanical" means the importance of both electric and mechanical properties; "Systems" implies MEMS integration with other chips. MEMS is sometimes called MST — Micro Systems Technology.




    One of the methods to manufacture MEMS is surface micromachining. This method consists in consecutively applying films (layers) on the silicon wafer and subsequent processing. There are two layer types: (1) the structural layer has the desired electrical, mechanical, and thermal properties; (2) the sacrificial layer. This layer is the first to be deposited. It supports the structural layer until it's etched and then it's removed from a wafer.




    The key application of MEMS is wireless devices. In the wireless system block diagram above, MEMS can act as a pre RF unit, which contains band pass filters, amplifiers, tunable elements, etc. MEMS advantages lie in using silicon to make all components of the system, that is the best integration, which leads to smaller form factors, better performance, and low power consumption.


    The second line of research in the R&D department of Fab 8 is semiconductors or silicon photonics. Photonics is a technology of emitting, transferring, controlling, and detecting photons using principles similar to those in optical fibre and optoelectronic devices. Advantages of using optical technologies for data transfer lie in miniature dimensions and simplicity of such devices (using a few signal lines), absolute insensibility to electromagnetic interference, low losses at long-range transmissions even of high theoretical throughput (up to 100 TB/s). Nevertheless, they are not without drawbacks, high costs in the first place due to exotic and expensive materials (gallium arsenide, indium phosphide, etc), expensive manufacturing and packaging technologies. In this connection, Intel sees its semiconductor photonics task in developing CMOS-compatible photonics — photonic devices based on usual silicon and standard streamlined technologies for semiconductor production in large volumes in the existing plants. Even though Si integration into photonics offers some problems, as silicon does not have some necessary properties like electro-optic effect and effective photon emission, Intel's research and development in this area has made great progress since the first Raman-effect continuous silicon laser designed in 2004.


     

    My Summary
    In 2004 it was clear to me that my Job was going to stop at the end of 2007 as I was working on the over 100 legacy products where the main products were 88C196EC was going to be stopped being used by  Bosch  it was clear that the 100 legacy poducts were closing in 2007

    See my Plans for career development in my project section how I tried to gain relevant skills with no employers help .

     


    Taken from the Presentation  at the end of 2006 where it showed that the Fab was closing and that it was clear from the previous year 
    One can see that from December 2005 fab 8 was closing all I asked was Guidance and Internal Support to  gain upskills that was at no
    or very small cost to my employer Intel.

      What I got was I was made a Anchor for the Fab8 in 2006 unable to apply for a Job outside Fab 8. 
      What I got was Closeure team in 2007 unable to apply for a job H1 2007.

      Second half 2007 and January to March 2008 I got the answer You do not have the Correct skills for the Jobs.
     

     Well if Intel was not a partner from 2004 to prepair the skills needed in 2008  

     

               

     

       

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