Author's Latest Posts

What Is Zonal Architecture? And Why Is it Upending the Automotive Supply Chain?

Over the last few years, the basic architecture of how a vehicle is put together has changed a lot. This has also resulted in a change in how the automotive supply chain is put together, too. The traditional ECU-based architecture and the automobile supply chain Historically, vehicles have been put together like the picture on the left in the above diagram. Vehicles could have as many a... » read more

The History Of CMOS

Since CMOS has been around for about 50 years, a comprehensive history would be a book. This blog focuses on what I consider the major transitions. NMOS Before CMOS, there was NMOS (also PMOS, but I have no direct experience with that). An NMOS gate consisted of a network of N-transistors between the output and Vss, and a resistor (actually a transistor with an implant) between the output and... » read more

The Automotive Electric Vehicle Transition

The only really interesting part of the automotive industry is the electric vehicle (EV) segment. These vehicles are also called NEVs in China for "new energy vehicles". The reason that I say this is the only interesting segment is because it is clear that the whole world is moving fast to EVs and internal combustion engines (ICEs) will decline. One challenge for traditional automotive manufact... » read more

Notes From CadenceLIVE Silicon Valley 2023

Last week was CadenceLIVE Silicon Valley, held at the Santa Clara Convention Center, and took place, as usual, over two days. It was very well attended and everywhere seemed fairly crowded. The structure of CadenceLIVE was that the first morning was taken up with four keynotes. Then the rest of the day and all of the following day were taken up with about ten parallel technical tracks. And at l... » read more

IEDM: Backside Power Delivery

One part of the short course that I attended at IEDM in December was about backside power delivery networks. It was presented by Gaspard Hiblot of imec and titled "Process Architectures Changes to Improve Power Delivery." The presentation is co-credited with Geert Hellings and Julien Ryckaert. I should preface this post with the fact that this presentation was 80 slides long and so I will only... » read more

How To Make Chiplets A Viable Market

At the recent Chiplet Summit, there was a panel session on the last afternoon titled "How to Make Chiplets a Viable Market." The panel was moderated by Meta's Ravi Agarwal, and the panelists were (from left to right in the photo): Travis Lanier of Ventana Micro Systems...actually Travis couldn't make it and Ventana was represented by Charles, but I didn't catch his last name Clint Walk... » read more

Automotive Security Vulnerabilities From Afar

Don't confuse automotive security with automotive safety, things like functional safety (FuSa) and ISO 26262. You need security to have safety. But security is its own thing. In a modern connected car, there are two places for security vulnerabilities. One is in the car itself. And the other is back at base in the automotive manufacturer's (OEM in the jargon) data centers, which the cars are co... » read more

IEDM: TSMC N3 Details

I attended IEDM in San Francisco in December. There were two presentations about TSMC's N3 process. This is actually a bit of a misnomer since TSMC has two N3 processes, one simply called N3. The other (the second generation) is called N3E. The two papers were: Critical Process Features Enabling Aggressive Contacted Gate Pitch Scaling for 3nm CMOS Technology and Beyond A 3nm CMOS FinFl... » read more

IEDM Keynote: Ann Kelleher On Future Technology

IEDM 2022 celebrated 75 Years of the Transistor. I can't imagine anything else invented in the last 75 years has had as much effect on my life, and probably yours, too. After the awards session, the conference got underway with a keynote by Ann Kelleher, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Technology Development at Intel. It was titled "Celebrating 75 Years of the Transistor! A L... » read more

Advanced Auto-Routing For TSMC InFO Technologies

At the recent TSMC OIP Symposium, John Park presented 'Advanced Auto-Routing for TSMC InFO Technologies.' InFO stands for "integrated fanout" and is the lower performance, lower complexity technology for advanced packaging. For details of TSMC's whole packaging portfolio, see my post TSMC OIP: 3DFabric Alliance and 3Dblox. Here's the slide TSMC presented from that presentation on InFO. As you... » read more

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