Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. has announced that the new high performance computing (HPC) chip, jointly developed by global chip design leader Broadcom and electric vehicle manufacturer, Tesla, will be crafted using TSMC's advanced 7nm process, and integrated with TSMC, China Times reports.
According to the company, production is expected to begin in Q4 2020, with an initial production volume of around 2,000 chips. However, this batch is likely to be used for testing. Chip production is expected to reach full mass production no earlier than Q4 2021.
HW4 rumor: TSMC 7nm. Tesla + Broadcom joint development. Initial production 2020 Q4. SoW— Kelvin Yang (@KelvinYang7) August 18, 2020
The HPC chip, created by Broadcom for Tesla, will in the future become the main application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) for Tesla's vehicles, which can be used to control and support advanced driving assistance systems, and to power the transmission for electric vehicles as well as its car entertainment.
Currently, the Tesla team is working to move to a more sophisticated AI framework that will improve the capabilities of Autopilot. Tesla CEO Elon Musk explained that what Tesla has done so far is pretty much operating in 2.5D. But 2.5D is not well-correlated in time. "You're thinking about the world in three dimensions and the fourth dimension being time," he said. He explained that it is really difficult to convey how much better a 4D system would work.
“The car will seem to have a giant improvement. It will probably roll out later this year. It will be able to do traffic lights, stops, turns, everything, pretty much. And then it will be a long march of (updates). So it's definitely way better than human, but how much better than a human does it need to be?" said Musk.
Although at the moment there is no reliable data, there is every reason to believe that the new chip will be used specifically for 4D FSD. On August 14, Musk tweeted that the limited public release of a fundamental architectural rewrite of the FSD will become available in 6 to 10 weeks.
The FSD improvement will come as a quantum leap, because it’s a fundamental architectural rewrite, not an incremental tweak. I drive the bleeding edge alpha build in my car personally. Almost at zero interventions between home & work. Limited public release in 6 to 10 weeks.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 14, 2020
This statement is consistent with the information that about 2,000 new chips will be produced in Q4 2020. It looks like by the end of 2020, Tesla will achieve and announce jaw-dropping results in the development of Full Self-Driving.
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About the Author
Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.