Reducing BEOL Parasitic Capacitance Using Air Gaps


Reducing back-end-of-line (BEOL) interconnect parasitic capacitance remains a focus for advanced technology node development. Porous low-k dielectric materials have been used to achieve reduced capacitance, however, these materials remain fragile and prone to reliability concerns. More recently, air gap has been successfully incorporated into 14nm technology [1], and numerous schemes have b... » read more

Verifying AI, Machine Learning


[getperson id="11306" comment="Raik Brinkmann"], president and CEO of [getentity id="22395" e_name="OneSpin Solutions"], sat down to talk about artificial intelligence, machine learning, and neuromorphic chips. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: What's changing in [getkc id="305" kc_name="machine learning"]? Brinkmann: There’s a real push toward computing at the edge. ... » read more

SerDes Signal Integrity Challenges At 28Gbps And Beyond


After nearly fifty years, NRZ technology continues to pose significant challenges as data rates approach 56Gbps and refreshed standards mandate increased receiver sensitivity (down to 35 mV). With shorter unit intervals and closing eyes, triggering becomes ever more complex and requires enhanced receiver equalization such as continuous-time-linear equalization and decision feedback equalization... » read more

What Is Portable Stimulus?


When [getentity id="22028" e_name="Accellera"] first formed the [getentity id="22863" comment="Portable Stimulus Working Group”] and gave it that name, I was highly concerned. I expressed my frustration that the name, while fitting with what most people thought [getkc id="10" kc_name="verification"] is about, does not reflect the true nature of the standard being worked on. In short, it is no... » read more

The Ultimate Shift Left


Floorplanning is becoming much more difficult due to a combination of factors—increased complexity of the power delivery network, lengthening of clock trees, rising levels of communication, and greater connectedness of [getkc id="81" kc_name="SoC"]s coupled with highly constrained routing resources. The goal of floorplanning is to determine optimal placement of blocks on a die. But connect... » read more

Power-Aware Analysis Solution


By reviewing the classic (or traditional) SI methodology, analyzing high-speed design flow, and examining what is employed in Cadence Sigrity power and signal simulations using the SPEED2000, PowerSI, Transistor-to-Behavioral Model Conversion (T2BTM), and SystemSI tools, this paper explains how a general power-aware SI solution not only should be capable of performing SSN simulations, but also ... » read more

Simulating Composite Structures


Composites provide new solutions for manufacturers looking for stronger, lighter and more cost-effective materials. At the same time, they pose new modeling and manufacturing challenges because of the nature of the materials. With the right simulation tools, designers can account for residual stresses, predict performance, analyze reliability and potential failures, optimize construction, and e... » read more

Optimization Challenges For 10nm And 7nm


Optimization used to be a simple timing against area tradeoff but not anymore. As we go to each new node, the tradeoffs become more complicated involving additional aspects of the design that used to be dealt with in isolation. Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss these issues with Krishna Balachandran, director of product management for low-power products at [getentity id="22032" e... » read more

Context Is Everything


With consumer and industrial IoT applications, the importance of system context to IC vendors is paramount. No more are the days of developing a chip in isolation; close partnership with systems companies is de rigueur as they provide the use case data that is foundational to development of systems that work. While this makes sense in a smartphone, it’s significantly harder to achieve in a... » read more

Reaching The Power Budget


Everything related to power in chip design today is a big deal—and it’s just getting bigger. Meeting the power budget is becoming harder at each new node, but it's also becoming difficult in a number of new application areas at existing nodes. That's a big problem because [getkc id="108" kc_name="power"] is now considered a competitive advantage in many markets. It's also one of the most... » read more

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