Speeding Up The Design Process


A rush to plant a stake in new markets, coupled with uncertainty about how to generate a reasonable return on investment in those markets, is ratcheting up pressure on chipmakers. They now must come up with more customized solutions in less time, frequently in smaller volumes, and with the ability to modify them in shorter time spans if market opportunities shift in unexpected ways. This aff... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


IC Insights released its preliminary top IC rankings in terms of sales for 2015. In the rankings, Intel remains in first place in terms of chip sales in 2015, followed by Samsung and TSMC. GlobalFoundries and UMC also moved up in the rankings. Beyond that, the market is in flux. “The pending mergers of Avago and Broadcom and NXP and Freescale will have a significant impact on future top-20 ra... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


An alliance led by IBM Research has produced the semiconductor industry’s first 7nm test chips with functioning transistors. The breakthrough, accomplished in partnership with GlobalFoundries and Samsung at SUNY Polytechnic Institute’s Colleges of Nanoscale Science and Engineering, could result in the ability to place more than 20 billion tiny switches, or transistors, on a chip. There i... » read more

Blog Review: March 11


How are sensors like a scallop's eyes? Rambus' Patrick Gill guides you through day in the life of the mollusk to show how inspiration for IoT was found in the sea. Cadence's Dimitry Pavlovsky discusses some of the intricacies associated with creating VIP for processor interconnect systems such as CHI, and how other tools are necessary to complete the task. Following Google's warning of a ... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


SPIE Advanced Lithography is a patterning show. At the event, however, Applied Materials revealed more details regarding its selective materials removal opportunity, according to Weston Twigg, an analyst with Pacific Crest Securities, in a research note. Applied Materials presented a paper entitled, “Where Is Plasma Etching Going from Here?” “The presenter outlined concepts for thin layer... » read more

Calculating Emulation’s Complex Cost Of Ownership


By Ann Steffora Mutschler Hardware emulation or hardware-assisted verification –whichever term you choose—has been around for decades. But until recently it has seen only modest adoption due to the high cost, long set-up time, power and IT requirements, among other things. But with simulation running out of steam between 50 and 100 million gates, this specialized hardware makes a ... » read more

Mining For Data


By Ann Steffora Mutschler Power analysis accuracy at the RTL design abstraction is a challenging problem. Smaller geometries just make the challenge of predicting accurate RTL power consumption even more difficult, which in turn impacts other design decisions such as power-grid planning and package selection. “It’s one of these things where the earlier you are in the design, even befo... » read more

The New Frontier: Low-Power Verification And Test


By Ann Steffora Mutschler By now there’s no argument that verification and test strategies must be considered at the very earliest stages of any design cycle, and when it comes to low-power designs, the advanced techniques used and design complexity make the challenges here even more daunting. Low-power verification and test strategies have been in development for a number of years, and it... » read more

What’s ST’s FD-SOI Technology All About?


As I blogged here on SemiMD last week, STMicroelectronics has announced that to supplement in-house production at their fab in Crolles, the company has tapped GlobalFoundries for high-volume production of 28nm then 20nm FD-SOI mobile devices.  ST will also open access to its FD-SOI technology to GlobalFoundries’ other customers.  High-volume manufacturing will kick off with ST-Ericsson’s ... » read more

2.5D Leverages Existing Tools On The Way To 3D


By Ann Steffora Mutschler As design and manufacturing issues with true 3D design continue to be worked out, interim 2.5D technologies are moving ahead as engineering teams leverage this packaging-driven approach to manage heat, cost, area and yield. Technologies such as Wide I/O memory support 2.5D, and when combined with logic they allow engineering teams to realize a performance increase,... » read more

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