Intel has hired Dr. Gary Patton, the former CTO at GlobalFoundries and an ex-head of IBM Microelectronics business. Dr Patton was leading Global Foundries leading edge processes before that project was cancelled. At Intel, Dr. Patton will be responsible for design enablement, a crucial connection between process technology, yields, performance, and time-to-market of actual products.

Gary Patton most recently served as the CTO of GlobalFoundries, where he was responsible for R&D and strategic decisions associated with upcoming process technologies. He joined GlobalFoundries from IBM Microelectronics in 2015, when GF took over IBM's fabrication technologies. At IBM, he had the same role and was responsible for research and development of new semiconductor process technologies.

GlobalFoundries, as a function of spending its 14/12nm profits into its 7nm development and one of its major shareholders wanting to recoup investment in the company, last year decided to cease development of leading-edge fabrication technologies. The company ended up focusing on its profitable 14/12nm processes and working on specialized manufacturing processes, such as 22FDX and 12FDX, to avoid direct competition from TSMC and Samsung Foundry. The new focus of the company to a large degree changed the role of the CTO and other executives, and over time we have seen an exodus of personnel who have traditionally been on the leading edge.

A Future at Intel: Helping Fix The Process Flow

At Intel, Gary Patton will serve as corporate vice president and general manager of design enablement reporting to Mike Mayberry, CTO of Intel. As the head of design enablement, Dr. Patton will be responsible for creation of an ecosystem that supports implementation of products using a particular process technology. Among other things, he will lead development of process design kits (PDKs), IP, and tools. The right combination of PDK, IP, tools, and other enablers ensure that the final product meets cost, performance and time-to-market requirements.

Gary Patton will be another high-ranking executive at Intel that comes from outside of the company. In the recent years Intel hired Jim Keller to develop CPU microarchitectures and Raja Koduri to lead development of discrete GPUs for PCs, datacenters, and other applications. No only this, but Dr. Murthy Renduchintala moved from Qualcomm to Intel as its chief engineering officer in recent years. 

At this time Intel has not formally made a statement as to their new hire. Dr. Patton's pages at GlobalFoundries have been removed.

We interviewed Dr. Patton at GlobalFoundries when we visited the Malta fab in 2018. You can read that interview here:

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Sources: Reuters

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  • Marlin1975 - Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - link

    No offense to the guy, but is following the footsteps of GlobalFoundries really something to brag about?
    Their track record is not exactly clean and even they dropped advanced tech as they could not make it work, and this guy was leading it.
  • Ian Cutress - Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - link

    Read what was written in this piece. GF 7nm was pulled because the major shareholder wanted some return on their investment, and 7nm R&D was creating a red hole despite a profitable 14/12nm. It wasn't pulled because it didn't work, it was just a money play.
  • nunya112 - Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - link

    I dont know if that is accurate Doc. Mubadala kept AMD at 28nm because it was broke. moving to 12/14nm would have been a smart move because AMD would have bought up all the wafer space and would have continued with its wafer agreement.
    AMD was able to back out of the wafer agreement because of this fact the lack of advancement.
  • Marlin1975 - Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - link

    No that is the PR they released. They were also saying they were about to start production of 7nm but the dates they gave and what partners were told did not align up. Let alone if they were already to start production then they already had sunk cost to that point. So to say they stopped right before the switch was thrown after it was already funded and tested does not make sense. Even AMD switched to TSMCs 7nm design well before GF said they were not going to do 7nm and AMD still had contracts with GF at the time that would have blocked such partnerships.

    You mean a 14nm they could never get to work and had to license from Samsung? And even then they still had issues ramping it up.

    Not really sure where you are going as this is all history that is well known. I know you want to keep good relations but trying to use their BS PR talking points is really lacking.
  • PeachNCream - Thursday, December 12, 2019 - link

    That's a shortsighted move to say the least. Pull out of R&D in a field where companies live and die via their R&D in order to grab a dividend to afford that new oceanfront property. Simply brilliant.
  • mode_13h - Saturday, December 14, 2019 - link

    If there was a business case but the problem was simply lack of short-term profitability, I wonder if they could've raised funds via IPO or maybe bond issue.
  • bobhumplick - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    dont think we should blame an entire company's failings on one man. especially when those failing might not be failings at all but a business decision.

    i actually think its a similar situation with intel. dont think they are really having 10nm problems but just made the choice that if their 10nm cant deliver enough density to make up for the production losses that quad patterning brings they would just stall and move to EUV and if EUV was going to be late they would just move to a more realistic 10nm node (10nm+ in this case). then only use that 10nm sparingly in areas where the power savings makes a huge difference. and if not for a resurgent amd the plan might have worked.

    i think they made a bet and they just chose wrong. but if amd hadnt come back and had not gotten on tsmc's 7nm the bet would have paid off. the first 10nm with all those techniques for getting enough density ended up with low clocks in the 2ghz range and poor yields so they scrapped it.

    the 96mtr\mm2 density of tsmcs 7nm was for their lp process for cell phones and i assume got about the same clocks as what intel got. the process amd are using is the lpp or hp or whatever and is similar density to what intel have gotten. and since intel are making so few 10nm chips clock speed binning isnt as effective and clocks appear much lower than they would be if intel used 10nm for everything and they could bin those chips out as fodder for dell's cheap i5 business machines.
  • FreckledTrout - Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - link

    He was part of the IBM division that GlobalFoundries purchased. Franky the IBM intellectual property is exactly what you pilfer from GlobalFoundries as that is the golden goose and well they aren't doing anything with the golden eggs anyhow.
  • Freeb!rd - Thursday, December 12, 2019 - link

    I guess you worked there and know all the sordid details? They could make it work and even committed to making their process compatible with TSMC, so AMD (and other potential customers, which I doubt they could attract without a Fab expansion) could leverage both foundries because GF wouldn't have enough capacity to meet AMD's needs.

    'GF made the size of its 7-nm pitches and SRAM cells similar to those of TSMC to let designers like AMD use both foundries. AMD “will have more demand than we have capacity, so I have no issues with that,” he said of AMD using the Taiwan foundry.'

    What GF had a problem with was:
    1) Only BIG customers that need a lot of capacity would probably go to 7nm.
    2) 7nm Double and Quad patterning take more time due to increase wafer runs reducing Fab Capacity.
    3) 7nm DUV would need to be quickly replace by 7nm EUV which requires big capital outlays.
    4) GF probably would need to build a companion building next to FAB8 at Malta to support such an endeavor.
    5) GF owner: Mubadala Investment Company was unwilling to continue to pour money into GF to support 7nm expansion that would be needed for GF to compete with the likes of Samsung & TSMC and attract customers for said 7nm process.
  • nunya112 - Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - link

    not sure if you want ppl from GLO Fo. not sure if any body can remember but they were stuck at what 28nm when everyone was on 14nm +++++ the company tanked AMD's stock price and didnt do anything to get itself out of that hole.
    what a poor choice of staff

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