Chinese tech giant Alibaba has revealed its new general-purpose central processing unit (CPU), the Yitian 710, which will form part of its Panjiu servers that run the company’s cloud computing operation, reports the South China Morning Post. The development highlights China’s self-reliance efforts in semiconductors and the nationwide roll-out of improved digital infrastructure.
The new CPU was internally designed by Alibaba’s T-Head semiconductor unit, based on architecture from British chip design company Arm. Using 5-nanometre process technology, which the semiconductor industry refers to as a new and improved generation of chip fabrication after the 7-nm process, the Yitian 710 is the first server chip to be based on the Armv9 architecture, according to Stewart Randall, head of electronics and embedded software at consultancy Intralink.
“Customizing our own server chips is consistent with our ongoing efforts toward boosting our computing capabilities,” said Jeff Zhang, president of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence and head of Alibaba DAMO Academy. He said the Yitian 710 chip will not be sold commercially.