From the Albuquerque Journal “Intel RR loses next-generation investment”
Intel Corp.’s plant in Rio Rancho has been passed over again for next-generation nanometer chip technology, but the plant is still an integral part of the company’s global production chain, New Mexico site manager Kirby Jefferson told the Albuquerque Economic Forum on Wednesday morning.
“This site was not selected for the 10 nanometer chips, that’s for certain,” Kirby said. “They will do it at other facilities. Seven nanometer is the next one, and we still don’t know where that will be.”
This is the third time New Mexico has been passed over for next-generation chip technology. The Rio Rancho site currently produces 32-nanometer chips, following a $2.5 billion investment in 2009 to upgrade the plant from 45-nanometer technology.
Now, being three cycles behind the curve makes it more difficult to compete for next-generation chips.
“The investment would have to be extremely high here, because we’re so far behind,” Kirby said.
The New Mexico Intel site hasn’t had the latest upgrades in 3 generations and the longer it goes without getting those upgrades the harder it is to get future upgrades. It seems to spell doom for the Intel New Mexico site.
“The New Mexico plant is front and center with what’s going on at Intel,” he said. “Intel is committed to this community. The thinking all the way up the chain is to keep this operation going.”
Call me skeptical. If I was a highly skilled worker at this site I would certainly see doom and gloom and I would be shopping my skills elsewhere, further adding to the decline of the site. If I recall correctly, when Intel was producing the Sandy Bridge processor the Intel New Mexico site was supposedly providing the majority of income to the whole Intel corporation buy producing the majority of those chips while the other sites were ramping up Haswell.
It feels as if the Intel management has kick the Intel New Mexico site to the curb.