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IC Data Hot Potato: Who Owns And Manages It?


Modern inspection, metrology, and test equipment produces a flood of data during the manufacturing and testing of semiconductors. Now the question is what to do with all of that data. Image resolutions in inspection and metrology have been improving for some time to deal with increased density and smaller features, creating a downstream effect that has largely gone unmanaged. Higher resoluti... » read more

AI In Inspection, Metrology, And Test


AI/ML is creeping into multiple processes within the fab and packaging houses, although not necessarily for the purpose it was originally intended. The chip industry is just beginning to learn where AI makes sense and where it doesn't. In general, AI works best as a tool in the hands of someone with deep domain expertise. AI can do certain things well, particularly when it comes to pattern m... » read more

Data Becomes Key For Next-Gen Chips


Data has become vital to understanding the useful life of a semiconductor — and the knowledge gleaned is key to staying competitive beyond Moore’s Law. What's changed is a growing reliance earlier in the design cycle on multiple sources of data, including some from further right in the design-through-manufacturing flow. While this holistic approach may seem logical enough, the semiconduc... » read more

Re-Imagining The GPU


John Rayfield, CTO at Imagination Technologies, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about RISC-V, AI, and computing architectures. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: What your plans are for RISC-V? Rayfield: We're actively finalizing the integration of RISC-V cores into future-generation GPUs. That work has been going on for several months. Moving forward, we'... » read more

Challenges In Printed And Disposable Chips


Printing inexpensive chips using technology developed for newspapers and magazines is gaining traction across a wide range of applications, from photovoltaic cells to sensors on a flexible substrate. But it's also adding a slew of new challenges that are unique to this approach. The world of flexible hybrid electronics (FHE) — printing integrated circuits on or attaching thin IC chips to a... » read more

Logic Chip, Heal Thyself


If a single fault can kill a logic chip, that doesn’t bode well for longevity of complex multi-chip systems. Obsolescence in chips is not just an industry ploy to sell more chips. It is a fact of physics that chips don’t last more than a few years, especially if overheated, and hit with higher voltage than it can stand. The testing industry does a great job finding defects during manufac... » read more

Racing To The Edge


The race is on to win a piece of the edge, despite the fact that there is no consistent definition of where the edge begins and ends or how the various pieces will be integrated or ultimately tested. The edge concept originated with the Internet of Things, where the initial idea was that tens of billions of dumb sensors would communicate through gateways to the cloud. That idea persisted unt... » read more

Chasing Reliability In Automotive Electronics


Assuring reliability in automotive electronics has set off a scramble across the semiconductor supply chain and unearthed a list of issues for which there is insufficient data, a lack of well-defined standards, and inconsistent levels of expertise. Reliable functional safety that spans 18 to 20 years of service in harsh environments, or under constant use with autonomous taxis or trucks, is ... » read more