Blog Review: Nov. 22


ARM's Jem Davies talks about an upcoming documentary on AI and where the lines need to be drawn between machine intelligence and human emotional intelligence. Mentor's Saunder Peng examines the impact of merging physical verification databases, which can cost time and resources, and how that can be streamlined. Cadence's Paul McClellan takes a look back at the Xerox Alto and how it change... » read more

Here Comes High-Res Car Radar


A dozen or so startups are developing high-resolution radar chips that use various modulation schemes and processes, such as CMOS, FD-SOI and even metamaterials. In theory, high-resolution radar could boost the capabilities of today’s radar for cars, as well as eliminate the need for a separate LiDAR system. But the technology is still in the research stage and has yet to be proven commerc... » read more

The Week in Review: IoT


Investment The city of Dresden, Germany, is touting its prospects as a tech hub in the “Silicon Saxony” ecosystem, particularly for Internet of Things technology. Bosch, the German Aerospace Center, GlobalFoundries, Infineon Technologies, and other organizations are planning to invest about €4.5 billion (approximately $5.3 billion) over several years to develop processors, sensors, and 5... » read more

Variation Spreads At 10/7nm


Variation between different manufacturing equipment is becoming increasingly troublesome as chipmakers push to 10/7nm and beyond. Process variation is a well-known phenomenon at advanced nodes. But some of that is actually due to variations in equipment—sometimes the exact same model from the same vendor. Normally this would fall well below the radar of the semiconductor industry. But as t... » read more

Overlay Challenges On The Rise


The overlay metrology equipment market is heating up at advanced nodes as the number of masking layers grows and the size of the features that need to be aligned continue to shrink. Both ASML and KLA-Tencor recently introduced new [getkc id="307" kc_name="overlay"] metrology systems, seeking to address the increasing precision required for lines, cuts and other features on each layer. At 10/... » read more

Chips In China


The Chinese semiconductor industry is undergoing radical change. The national imperative is to increase self-sufficiency in semiconductors dramatically in the next few years, because while China is the world’s fastest-growing semiconductor market, it currently must import about 80 percent of the chips used in equipment manufactured by Chinese OEMs. Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province ... » read more

The Return Of Body Biasing


Body biasing is making a comeback across a wide swath of process nodes as designers wrestle with how to build mobile devices with more functionality and longer battery life. Consider an ultra-low-power IoT device with a wireless sensor, for example, which is meant to last for years without changing a battery. Body biasing can be used to create an ultra-low-leakage sleep state. “In that ... » read more

The Promises And Challenges Of 7nm


Despite a waning Moore’s Law and the increasing costs of advanced process nodes, the semiconductor industry is steadily approaching 7 nanometers (nm). The demand for 7nm is driving expected initial tape-outs from fabs by the end of 2017, with initial volumes beginning in 2018 and ramping up by 2019. Silicon fabbed on 7nm nodes will offer a number of benefits for chipmakers, including lower po... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers Bloomberg has reported that Broadcom is in talks to acquire Qualcomm for $70 per share or about $90 billion. Qualcomm is attempting to acquire NXP, but Broadcom has its sights on Qualcomm, not NXP. “We think AVGO would want to acquire QCOM assets not NXP,” said Amit Daryanani, an analyst with RBC. Samsung continues to reshuffle its management amid a plethora of changes at t... » read more

Blog Review: Nov. 1


Mentor's Nitin Bhagwath continues digging into DDR timing with a look at the clock-to-DQS requirement at the DRAM and how "write-leveling" is used to solve layout issues caused by the requirement. Synopsys' Dipesh Handa checks out what's new in the MIPI CSI-2 v2.0 specification that opens it up to new imaging and vision applications, including IoT and automotive. Cadence's Ken Willis delv... » read more

← Older posts