Sun Microsystems Jumps Ahead of Intel and IBM with 64-bit, 130 Nanometer Process Technology Processor

9/20/2002 - Sun Microsystems countered industry trends towards gas-guzzler 64-bit microprocessors with announcement of the UltraSPARCTM III Cu 1200 processor. By migrating to a new 130 nanometer production process available to Sun through long-time manufacturing source Texas Instruments, the new chip boosts clock frequency by 14 percent to 1.2 GHz and slashes power consumption by 30 percent, from 75 Watts (peak) to 53 Watts (peak) compared to the current flagship UltraSPARC III Cu 1050 processor, Sun's breakthrough in lower power consumption and smaller die area offer projected reduction in system operations costs, increased potential for system compute density and improved reliability, availability and serviceability (RAS).

Announcement of the UltraSPARC III Cu 1200 processor at the 2002 SunNetwork Conference joins news of a new generation of server dynamic reconfiguration software from Sun, that brings grid-style computing to enterprise systems.

David Yen, executive vice president, Sun Processor and Network Products Group said: "The UltraSPARC III Cu 1200 processor again demonstrates the strengths of the UltraSPARC III design and the benefits of our close relationship with Texas Instruments. Through the UltraSPARC III architecture, we're maintaining competitive performance while reversing the trend to excessive power consumption. The TI relationship-now in its fourteenth year-gives us access to industry leading process technology that helps our system products deliver differentiating customer benefits in the areas of cost, compute density, energy efficiency and RAS."

Industry-Leading Chip Making Technology
Sun credits these gains through use of a new 130 Nanometer (nm) geometry production process available exclusively to Sun through long-time manufacturing source Texas Instruments, Inc. The 130 nm microprocessor chip making technology, jointly co-defined by Sun and TI, is a full generation ahead of the 180 nm processes used to make IBM Power4 and Intel Itanium 2 processors. Furthermore, processor die size reductions enabled through the finer geometry process should lower the production cost of the UltraSPARC III processor, further cementing its position as the lowest-cost 64-bit processor.

Less is Moore's
Sun has achieved performance improvements combined with cost and energy consumption reductions in the UltraSPARC Cu 1200 processor through unique application of "Moore's Law" principles. As proposed by Intel Corporation co-founder Gordon Moore, advances in semiconductor process technology have the effect of doubling the number of transistors that can be integrated into a given area of silicon die every 18 months. But instead of regarding Moore's law as a license to pack the maximum number of transistors in the largest possible die area, Sun engineers have taken a "Less is Moore's" approach to use process technology advances to reduce die size and with it, processor manufacturing cost and power consumption.

Sun system products incorporating the UltraSPARC III Cu 1200 processor are expected -for customer shipment within 120 days of this date and will be announced separately by respective Sun system product groups.

Fifth Generation Dynamic Server Reconfiguration
The other main system product news at the conference revolved a new approach to server workload configuration management. Sun Microsystems' new Fifth Generation Dynamic Reconfiguration Software merges web-based user interface, server configuration and active load balancing technologies to bring grid-style computing concepts to enterprise data centers. Most significantly, the new capabilities in the new software give IT organizations new ways to maximize workloads processed in their Sun-based environments, further driving down total cost of ownership and operation.

About Sun Microsystems
Since its inception in 1982, a singular vision — "The Network Is The ComputerTM" — has propelled Sun Microsystems, Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW) to its position as a leading provider of industrial-strength hardware, software and services that make the Net work. Sun can be found in more than 170 countries.

Sun, the Sun logo, Sun Microsystems, Solaris and Java are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the United States and in other countries. All SPARC trademarks are used under license and are trademarks or registered trademarks of SPARC International, Inc. in the United States and other countries. Products bearing SPARC trademarks are based upon an architecture developed by Sun Microsystems, Inc. UNIX is a registered trademark in the United States and other countries exclusively licensed through X/Open Company, Ltd.

Previous Page | News by Category | News Search

If you found this page useful, bookmark and share it on: