Advanced Analog And Mixed Signal Design Continues Pushing The Design Envelope

As PCB design has evolved into its present form with extremely complex boards housing high speed circuitry in very small areas, analog and mixed signal (AMS) and high speed analysis can address the latest design challenges. Analog/mixed signal design More and more products incorporate more than just digital circuitry. The vast majority of products now integrate digital and analog circuitr... » read more

Pattern Matching in Design and Verification

Pattern matching (PM) was first introduced as the semiconductor industry began to shift from simple one-dimensional rule checks to the two-dimensional checks required by sub-resolution lithography. These rule checks proved far more complex to write, hard to code for fast runtimes, and difficult to debug. Incorporating an automated visual capture and compare process enabled designers to define t... » read more

Resetting Expectations On Multi-Patterning Decomposition And Checking

It never ceases to amaze me how much confusion and misunderstanding there is when it comes to multi-patterning (MP) decomposition and checking. I sometimes forget just how new a topic it is in our industry. Because of this short-lived history, and the limited time designers have had to acquire any detailed understanding of its complexity, there appears to be some serious disconnect in expectati... » read more

Raising The IQ Of Your MEMS-Based IC Design Flow

By Nicolas Williams and Qi Jing Internet of Things (IoT) applications depend on smart objects that interact with the real world. So your IoT project is likely to contain ICs that integrate micro electro-mechanical systems (MEMS), such as accelerometers, pressure sensors, motors, and microphones that acquire data for analysis. These projects are finding their way into automobiles, phones, and... » read more

Déjà Vu For CMP Modeling?

One definition of design for manufacturing (DFM) is providing knowledge about the impact of the manufacturing process on a design layout to the designers, so they can use that information to improve the robustness, reliability, or yield of their design before tapeout. Essentially, DFM is about designers taking ownership of the full “lifecycle” of a design, and going beyond the required desi... » read more

Ensuring Optimal Performance For Physical Verification

By accessing the most recently qualified version of foundry rule files, users get the most efficient rule implementations. By adopting the most recent version of Calibre, users get the latest improvements in available operations, operation performance, data hierarchy optimization and total scaling, providing the best possible performance and minimizing runtimes. Design teams running full-chip D... » read more

Case Studies In Double-Patterning Debug

Double patterning (DP) impacts just about every part of the design and manufacturing flows. However, the kinds of issues you encounter, the way they manifest themselves, and the ideal way to address them may be very different in different parts of these flows. I feel like I have spent a lot of time the last six months or so working with place and route (P&R) and chip finishing engineers on DP i... » read more

Balancing On The Color Density Tightrope

Balancing on wobbly tightropes is something that chip designers get pretty good at. For instance, there is a fine balance between optimizing performance and minimizing leakage in a design layout. Dealing with the new requirements that multi-patterning (MP) introduces into a design flow creates many new tightropes to walk. I tiptoed out on one of the rarely talked about ones in my last article... » read more

Rule Deck Comparison Doesn’t Have To Be Difficult

Foundry rule decks change all the time, as foundries uncover new manufacturing issues, or the process changes, or design criteria are tightened to improve runtime or stability. Sometimes new versions of a user’s design rule checking (DRC) tool are released, and the results from the DRC run differ from the previous version. Or perhaps a company wants to compare results between rule decks from ... » read more

Conflicting Needs For IoT Edge Designs

The mad rush has begun to hype the [getkc id="76" comment="Internet of Things"], but the path forward isn't quite as straightforward as the marketers would like it to be. ICs used at the edge of the IoT—the ones that gather information to be controlled by smart phones or tablets and transmitted to devices for processing and data analytics—need to be designed differently than the initial for... » read more

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