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Construction begins on Intel's $20 billion investment in new Arizona chip factories

Intel Chip
Intel Chip (Image credit: 60 Minutes)

What you need to know

  • The world's chip supply chain is in disarray due to coronavirus, material shortages, and other factors.
  • Intel is committed to fighting said supply chain issues as well as re-establishing U.S. leadership in the chip space.
  • Its latest $20 billion investment in the chip race has officially begun construction.

The global semiconductor shortage has been impacting a variety of sectors, ranging from the auto and medical industries to PC gaming hardware manufacturing. Intel has been committed to combatting said shortage and, by extension, helping get tech companies back on their feet so that they can supply consumers with the best graphics cards and other useful hardware.

Months ago, the company spoke about putting $20 billion toward new chip factories (oftentimes referred to as fabs, a truncation of "wafer fabrication facilities") in Arizona, and now, construction has officially begun. Intel claims this marks the "largest private investment in state history" and serves as a reiteration of its focus on getting the U.S. semiconductor industry back into world-class shape. The U.S. falling behind in this department was a focus of Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger's during his appearance on the program 60 Minutes.

You can read more about Intel's investments in the two new Arizona fabs via the company's press release on the subject. And know that while Intel invests in the U.S.'s semiconductor sector, the same sorts of investments are happening with rival companies and countries.

For example, the ongoing chip war between the U.S. and China remains heated as companies such as SMIC work to ensure China's technological self-sufficiency and independence.

With regards to Intel's commencement of construction on its new Arizona fabs, don't expect these developments to fix shortage issues overnight. As many companies have said, it'll be a good year or so before there's a realistic chance of supply chains stabilizing.

Robert Carnevale is the News Editor for Windows Central. He's a big fan of Kinect (it lives on in his heart), Sonic the Hedgehog, and the legendary intersection of those two titans, Sonic Free Riders. He is the author of Cold War 2395. Have a useful tip? Send it to robert.carnevale@futurenet.com.

7 Comments
  • Yay! I seriously hope Intel's DG2 GPUs are extremely competitive as that would really help with supply and demand (when they are up and running with a full production lines of course - which would be by around 2023 - leading credence to oversupply in 2023 - though I think it would be only a short window, I hope I'm wrong and it lasts a long while). As well as providing competition to AMD and Nvidia too.
  • Chances of "oversupply" in 2023 are extremely low. However if there is, it'll finally lead to prices normalizing.
  • Yes! Let's pick the dryest place on earth to build new chip factories that stuck up water like it's water.
  • Well, you got better locations where these factories could be built? Bear in mind, construction is extremely noisy and can cause traffic jams. Two things which always drives most local residents adverserial to new construction projects especially large factories.
  • Actually Arizona isn't even close to the driest place in the US, much less the world. The two driest places in the US are in California (Calexico and Death Valley) and the state as a whole depends on water from other states (particularly the Colorado River, just as Arizona), as well as its electricity. Arizona isn't exactly drowning but they are among the best states in water management practices: http://www.arizonawaterfacts.com/do-we-have-enough One would expect the water authorities have accounted for Phoenix growth and intel needs before allowing the new construction projects. But then idiotpoliticians™ do stupid things all the time. We'll see.
  • I wish them well. I still get depressed when driving by the old Intel plant here in Colorado Springs. Thousands of jobs gone and an abandoned building still waiting to be fully repurposed. :(
  • Happy to see this being done in the USA. I too am curious of the location. Why not put it in some "Red" Southern State like GA, FL or TX where there is so much water they don't know what to do with it?