Chip-maker Intel has announced that is has started shipping four halogen-free Xeon processors (series 5200 and 5400). The chips are functionally the same as the previous versions, and they are drop-in compatible.
What's Wrong With Halogens?
Halogens might not sound that bad because we're familiar with the word (all those lamps), but the Halogen family includes fluorine, chlorine, bromine, iodine, and astatine. "Halogens are highly reactive, and as such can be harmful or lethal to biological organisms in sufficient quantities." Now, we're not saying that your CPU is dangerous to you (don't try too eat it, though), but over the manufacturing of millions of them, it adds up to a lot of halogens. Removing them will no doubt make electronics recycling safer.
From Intel's release:
A number of systems vendors are supporting these new processors including Asus, Dell, Fujitsu, Fujitsu-Siemens, Gigabyte, HP, IBM, Microstar, NEC, Quanta, Rackable Systems Inc., Sun Microsystems, Supermicro, Tyan and Verari Systems. The new 5400 series processors are available now, while the X5270 will be available this fall.
We hope that this means that Intel will transition its whole line of chips soon, and since Intel is the 800 lbs gorilla in its industry, competitors will probably follow its lead.
Other Green Initiatives by Intel
Intel's Next CPU To Include Dedicated 'Power Control Unit' to Save Power
Intel Shows Wireless Electricity System at IDF
TH Interview: More on Intel's Renewable Energy Purchase
Intel: Now Largest Purchaser of Green Power in U.S.