What Does “Low Power Optimization” Mean To You?


As I was researching some new low power capabilities, I asked this question of nearly every designer I met: “How important is low power optimization?” It turns out that it’s a pretty useless question because of course it’s important to just about everyone. After all, reducing power improves reliability and reduces design costs. And for chips destined for certain applications, such as mo... » read more

Tech Talk: Neural Networks


Megha Daga, senior technical marketing manager at Cadence, talks with Semiconductor Engineering about convolutional neural networks, including the bandwidth and compute challenges associated with them. » read more

Power Challenges At 10nm And Below


Current density is becoming much more problematic at 10nm and beyond, increasing the amount of power management that needs to be incorporated into each chip and boosting both design costs and time to market. Current per unit of area has been rising since 90nm, forcing design teams to leverage a number of power-related strategies such as [getkc id="143" kc_name="dynamic voltage and frequency... » read more

Performance-IP: Less Memory Latency


The combination of more functionality on chips plus more contention for memories is forcing companies to look at different ways to improve performance. Just adding more processing power doesn't guarantee improved performance, and throwing more memory at a problem—either SRAM or multiple levels of cache—is expensive and not always faster. There are too many processors and too many request... » read more

Cloud Computing Chips Changing


An explosion in cloud services is making chip design for the server market more challenging, more diverse, and much more competitive. Unlike datacenter number crunching of the past, the cloud addresses a broad range of applications and data types. So while a server chip architecture may work well for one application, it may not be the optimal choice for another. And the more those tasks beco... » read more

Power Management Validation


Power consumption is becoming a critical aspect of hardware design. No longer is verifying an SoC solely answering the question “does it work?” Now designers must also answer the question “does it meet my power budget?” When trying to find power issues it is critical to run the complete system in a realistic manner—at the system-level when the design/verification team is looking at th... » read more

Fix Processes, Then Silos


Jack Welch, former CEO of GE, was a big proponent of what he called a "boundaryless corporation." It was a good sound bite, but it pales in comparison to former Intel CEO Andy Grove's philosophy of working out of a cubicle, just like the rest of his staff. While it's great to have corporate buy-in for breaking down silos, which are vertically integrated, the real problem for semiconductor c... » read more

Routing Signals At 7nm


[getperson id="11763" comment="Tobias Bjerregaard"], [getentity id="22908" e_name="Teklatech's"] CEO, discusses the challenges of designs at 7nm and beyond, including power integrity, how to reduce IR drop and timing issues, and how to improve the economics of scaling. SE: How much further can device scaling go? Bjerregaard: The way you should look at this is [getkc id="74" comment="Moore... » read more

The Fundamental Power States For UPF Modeling And Power Aware Verification


The IEEE 1801-2015 specifies the new semantics of power states through the ‘add_power_state’ UPF command. This new construct primarily allows incremental refinement of power states for power domains and its associated supply sets. The refinement concepts are actually originated from the fundamental conceptual set of power states termed as indefinite, definite, and deferred power states. In ... » read more

Tech Talk: Extending DRAM


Bruce Bateman, senior principal engineer at Kilopass, talks about how to extend the life of DRAM and how to work with smaller, denser memory.   Related Stories Executive Insight: Charlie Cheng Kilopass’ CEO talks about how to cut the capacitor in DRAM and why that’s important in the data center. » read more

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