Apple Chip Supplier TSMC Plans to Build Second $12 Billion Arizona Factory

Apple chip supplier TSMC plans to build another fabrication plant in Arizona alongside the $12 billion factory it has already committed to in Phoenix, reports The Wall Street Journal.

tsmc arizona

TSMC's topping-out ceremony for its first plant in Arizona

The second plant will be located north of Phoenix and investment is expected to be roughly similar to the $12 billion the company committed to in 2020, according to people familiar with the plans who spoke to WSJ.

The original plant was originally expected to exclusively mass-produce 5nm chips, but it is now gearing up to also produce more advanced 4nm chips with larger capacity at the facility, according to WSJ's sources. The plant is expected to start mass production in 2024.

Meanwhile, the second plant is expected to manufacture cutting edge next-generation 3nm chips, a process that Apple is rumored to be moving its custom silicon to starting with the M2 Pro or M3 chip. Both Apple's M3 chip for Macs and A17 chip for iPhone 15 Pro models are expected to be manufactured based on TSMC's enhanced ‌3nm‌ process. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has said he expects the M2 Pro to be used in the 14-inch MacBook Pro, 16-inch MacBook Pro, and a high-end Mac mini.

The news about TSMC's unannounced plans follows attempts by the Biden administration to attract investments in U.S. chipmaking by offering companies billions in financial support to become established in the country. The efforts aim to counter China's tech sector ambitions and secure components considered vital to national security. The efforts were accelerated after the chip shortages in late 2020 and 2021 underlined how important semiconductors have become in the world of consumer electronics.

TSMC's main factories are located in Taiwan, but it already operates a factory in Camas, Washington, as well as design centers in Austin, Texas and San Jose, California, meaning that the second Arizona facility will be its third manufacturing site in the United States.

Top Rated Comments

MichaelQ Avatar
19 months ago
Good on TSMC for not caving in to peer pressure and keeping their logo from 1983.
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Shirasaki Avatar
19 months ago
The sooner we can cut the reliance on China for iPhone production the better. Also yes, national security Heh…
(Yes the chip is produced in Taiwan but still)
Score: 26 Votes (Like | Disagree)
darngooddesign Avatar
19 months ago
It's great for Arizona and great for US workers, but should we be building a second chip factory, which will require a lot of water to run, in a state suffering from historic drought? Hopefully they are also leaning into solar for its power requirements because the Hoover Dam's hydro output is already suffering as those water levels drop.
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ProfessionalFan Avatar
19 months ago
Guy on the left has a hell of a beard. I like this deal just based on that
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
anakin44011 Avatar
19 months ago
$12B sounds like a lot of money until you wonder how much of its capacity is already pre-sold. That, and the tax break, probably make it a no-brainer.

Provided they can get enough neon required to actually make the chips. I have read that:

:( Ukraine produces 90% of the semiconductor-grade neon used by the U.S.

:( Some 45%-54% of the world’s semiconductor grade neon, critical for the lasers used to make chips, comes from two Ukrainian companies, Ingas and Cryoin, both of which shuttered their operations earlier this year.

Not only has Ukraine fed many of its neighboring countries with its wheat production...now we have chip-grade neon on the other side of the spectrum. Globalized supply chains are as complicated as they are vulnerable. Let's hope TMSC (and Intel, for that matter), can get the raw materials they need to actually run those plants.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tridley68 Avatar
19 months ago
Good. On them for building in the U.S. The sooner we cut China out of the picture the better we will be.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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