Black Arrow plans to ship out its 14 nm miniaturized "Minion" chip by May 2015

KNCMiner recently received widespread coverage of their announcement that they will be launching their “Solar” line of 16 nm chips in early 2015.

Quietly however, Hong Kong based Black Arrow LTD has been planning to up one-up KNCMiner with an even smaller process. By December of this year, if all goes according to Black Arrow’s plans, 14 nm chips will be cruising down the production pipeline.

According to Black Arrow’s schedule, the tape-out date is set to December 2014 with wafers scheduled to be completed in April 2015. Chips will be ready to be shipped in May 2015.

The 28 nm Black Arrow Minion

The 28 nm Black Arrow Minion

As Alex Berk of Black Arrow explains, “We are not aware of any company [that has] been able to access 14nm Finfet, and our partners are confident that the competition will not have access to this particular technology before we do.

Black Arrow’s current 28 nm chip, the Minion, is capable of running at 120 ghash/sec at 0.75 J/gh.

Black arrow has a solid history of chip manufacture, although their Prospero line of miners has been plagued by manufacturing issues in which short circuits would occur, melting the board.

Black Arrow joins a growing crowd of chip makers who will be moving to 14 nm or 16 nm in 2015.

Even if only one or two of them succeed in producing narrower chips, the efficiency gains will be such that currently-existing hardware may be obsolete as soon as late summer, and we’ll see the network difficulty soar to new highs. 

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