Intel Unveils 2nd-gen Bonanza Mine Chip for Efficient Bitcoin Mining

Computer chip manufacturing giant Intel Corporation shared details of a new mining chip that will be coupled with a high-performance 3,600 Watt miner with the ultimate goal of improving Bitcoin (BTC) mining efficiency.

Intel revealed its second-generation BTC mining setup during the IEEE International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) 2023, a conference dedicated to the electronics and chip manufacturing industry.

According to the company, Bonanza mine (BMZ2) is an ultra-low-voltage energy-efficient Bitcoin mining ASIC that can deliver 40 Terahashes per second (40 TH/s) performance.

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Intel’s Bonanza setup. Source: 2023 IEEE

As Cointelegraph previously reported, Intel’s patent related to “high-performance Bitcoin Mining” dates back to November 2018, which had proposed to reduce overall power consumption by approximately 15%. Intel representatives at the time showed confidence in competing against established players including Bitmain, MicroBT and Nvidia:

“Intel has done design work around SHA 256 optimized ASICs for several years beginning with pathfinding work done in Intel Labs.”

The BMZ2 chips are expected to follow an architecture similar to its 1st-gen mining chip BMZ1, wherein over 300 chips, powered by a 3600W miner, work together to deliver up to 40TH/s in a balanced environment.

Intel’s next-generation BTC miner will be able to deliver a balanced performance of 40.4 TH/s by drawing 2,293W of power — recording a low energy consumption of 56.97 joules per terahash (J/Th). When compared to Bitmain’s hardware, Antminer S19j ASIC Bitcoin miner consumes 3,100 Watts for delivering up to 90 TH/s at room temperature, resulting in an efficiency of 34.5 J/Th.

In addition, the hardware will also have the option to operate in high-performance and power-saving modes to optimize the energy-cost ratio across various degrees of mining efficiencies.

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Intel is yet to announce a date for its official launch along with the technical requirements of the 2nd-generation mining setup.

The Bitcoin network mining difficulty maintains an upward trend, showcasing a strong indication of growing resilience against network attacks.

At its peak, Bitcoin recorded a hash rate of 248.11 EH/s on Feb. 13 after jumping 31.69% from 188.40 EH/s in just one day.

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Bitcoin hash rate over the past year. Source: YCharts

With the increase in the hash rate, BTC mining equipment needs to evolve for delivering higher performance while consuming comparatively energy.