China will begin production of AI chips bypassing US sanctions


Chinese scientists are considering building large facilities to design semiconductor chips to create artificial intelligence (AI) systems. This was reported by the South China Morning Post.

As part of the initiative, it is planned to build a particle accelerator with a diameter of 100-150 meters, which will be used to produce AI processors. Researchers from Tsinghua University are already negotiating with the authorities of Xiongang province to select a site.

Particle accelerators will replace the role of lithography machines in the production stages of semiconductor chips for high-level artificial intelligence systems. The beam of light generated by the device is extreme ultraviolet (EUV), which is used to create chips smaller than 7 nm.

“One potential application of our research is as a light source for future EUV lithography machines. I think that’s why the international community is paying close attention to them,” said project leader Professor Tang Chuanxiang.

At the heart of the Chinese research is a new luminescence mechanism called stable microbunching (SSMB). The technology is the “ideal” light source and has higher average power and performance at low cost.

The scientists’ report says that China’s own technologies will help it circumvent existing US sanctions.

At the moment, the Dutch Advanced Semiconductor Materials Lithography is the only company that owns the technology to create 2 nm chips. In January, the United States banned the company from selling its products to the Chinese market, and later restrictions also affected Nvidia.

“Our independent development of EUV lithography machines still has a long way to go, but SSMB-based light sources give us an alternative for sanctions technology,” the scientists emphasized.

On August 15, the PRC introduced an artificial intelligence law that requires prior approval from the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) before launching relevant products.

CAC previously launched a campaign to combat fake AI news. The department has targeted methods of creating content that evoke emotions in the audience to attract attention and traffic for “unseemly purposes.”

In January, a law came into force in China prohibiting the creation of deepfakes without the permission of the subject or to the detriment of national interests.

In April, the CAC published draft rules aimed at regulating generative artificial intelligence algorithms.

As a reminder, on August 30, local companies Baidu, Baichuan Intelligent Technology, SenseTime and Zhipu AI launched their own AI-based chatbots after government approval.

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