Today’s processors, made using a single continuous slab of silicon, may soon give way to multiple chips interconnected at high speeds, Intel said Tuesday morning.
Intel said its new Embedded Multi-die Interconnect Bridge, or EMIB, technology would let a 22nm chip connect to a 10nm chip and a 14nm chip, all on the same processor.
“For example, we can mix high-performance blocks of silicon and IP together with low-power elements made from different nodes for extreme optimization,” said Intel’s Murthy Renduchintala, who heads the Client, IoT, and Systems Architecture Group.
That’s a radical departure from how the company has constructed most CPUs and SoCs, where all components of a CPU or SoC are built on the same process.
Renduchintala didn’t commit EMIB to any particular upcoming SoC or CPU but said it was clear the tech would play a large role in near-term and long-term products from Intel.
Renduchintala said EMIB can hit “multi hundreds of gigabytes” speeds while reducing latency by four times over traditional multichip techniques.
“It’s truly a transformational technology for Intel,” he said.
EMIB is far more advanced though, and is constructed within the silicon itself. A traditional multichip package design runs wires through the substrate that the chips are mounted to. That limits the amount of wires and speeds they can run at.
Another method is to use a silicon interposer to connect the dies. While this yields high wire density and high performance, it’s expensive to manufacturer.
EMIB essentially makes it far easier to combine chips without giving up much of the performance.