The new facility, dubbed “Silicon Junction,” will sit at the heart of Saxony-Anhalt’s capital, Magdeburg. It will consist of two factories, both of which will use Intel’s Angstrom-era transistor technologies to help “balance the global semiconductor supply chain” as most of the world continues to rely on Asian fabs, which currently perform 80 percent of global chip manufacturing. Intel estimates these factories will create 7,000 construction-related jobs during the building phase, 3,000 permanent jobs once construction is complete, and thousands of other economic opportunities across its partners and suppliers.
The megafab is the first of Intel’s multi-stage plan to expand its European operations. After kicking off construction on Silicon Junction, Intel plans on establishing a new research and development (R&D) and design hub near Plateau de Saclay, France. Once that’s complete, it plans to tackle R&D, manufacturing, and foundry services across Europe. It will begin with a $13 billion expansion of its existing fab in Leixlip and a brand new supercomputing research facility in Barcelona. This will result in a total investment of $88 billion in Europe over the next decade—a budget likely boosted by the European Union’s recent $49 billion commitment to strengthening the region’s competitiveness in the areas of semiconductor technologies and applications.
“Our planned investments are a major step both for Intel and for Europe,” Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger said in the company’s press release. “The EU Chips Act will empower private companies and governments to work together to drastically advance Europe’s position in the semiconductor sector. This broad initiative will boost Europe’s R&D innovation and bring leading-edge manufacturing to the region for the benefit of our customers and partners around the world.”
Though it’s currently in the planning stage, Intel intends to begin construction on the megafab in early 2023, given it receives all necessary green lights from the European Commission. Actual chip production is set to begin in 2027.