Power State Switching Gets Tougher


Power state switching delay is a key factor in minimizing power, and getting it right frequently means the difference between a successful design and a dead chip. But tradeoffs are intricate, complex and often involve judgment calls, making this a place where designs can go completely awry. For years, traditional, full-swing [gettech id="31093" comment="CMOS"] process technologies were used ... » read more

Low-Power Design Is A Corporate Mindset At ARM


The use of the PowerPro platform in the methodology outlined in this paper provides ARM with an RTL design flow which is power-centric. The ability to perform daily RTL power analysis at the block/unit level provides rapid turnaround on the power trend, while weekly analysis provides more complete benchmark reference metrics. To read more, click here. » read more

Timing Closure Issues Resurface


Timing closure has resurfaced as a major challenge at 10nm and 7nm due to more features and power modes, increased process variation and other manufacturing-related issues. While timing-related problems are roughly correlated to rising complexity in semiconductors, they tend to generate problems in waves—about once per decade. In SoCs, timing closure problems have spawned entire methodolog... » read more

7nm Design Success Starts With Multi-Domain Multi-Physics Analysis


Companies can benefit from advancements in the latest semiconductor process technology by delivering smaller, faster and lower power products, especially for those servicing mobile, high performance computing and automotive ADAS applications. By using 7nm processes, design teams are able to add a lot more functionality onto a single chip and lower the power consumption by scaling operating volt... » read more

Teaching Computers To See


Vision processing is emerging as a foundation technology for a number of high-growth applications, spurring a wave of intensive research to reduce power, improve performance, and push embedded vision into the mainstream to leverage economies of scale. What began as a relatively modest development effort has turned into an all-out race for a piece of this market, and for good reason. Mark... » read more

Partitioning For Power


Examine any smartphone design today and most of the electronic circuitry is "off" most of the time. And regardless of how many processor cores are available, it's rare to use more than a couple of those cores at any point in time. The emphasis is shifting, though, as the mobility market flattens and other markets such as driver-assisted vehicles and IoT begin gaining traction. In a car, turn... » read more

Energy Harvesting Gains Steam


Energy harvesting is gaining traction with a surge in ultra-low-power IoT applications, ranging from inventory tracking, wearables and drones, to vibration sensors for motors in industrial settings. The idea that machines could run without batteries—or that energy could be harvested either from motion or ambient sound waves or chemical reactions to augment battery power—has been in the w... » read more

Security Becomes A Multi-System Issue


The fallout from the Mirai malware attack last week was surprising, given that it was published on the Internet several months ago as open-source. Despite numerous warnings, it still managed to cause denial of service attacks at Amazon, Netflix, and a slew of other companies that are supposed to be able to fend off these kinds of attacks. The good news is that it more people talking about th... » read more

The Zen Of Processor Design


Mark Papermaster, chief technology officer at Advanced Micro Devices, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to discuss how to keep improving performance per watt, new packaging options, and the increasing focus on customization for specific tasks. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: As we get more into the IoT and we have to deal with more data, not to mention cars where da... » read more

The Real Value Of Digital Horsepower


Chipmakers and systems vendors are beginning to experiment with a slew of new ways to beef up performance and reduce power and area, now that shrinking features no longer guarantees those improvements. The number of new ideas introduced at industry conferences in the past few months is almost mind-boggling. Just on the CPU side there are new architectures that improve the amount of work that... » read more

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