Physical Verification For Photonics Integrated Circuits


Silicon photonics is a promising solution for the explosive growth of data volume and network traffic in computing and communications. Silicon photonics integrates photonics applications on a silicon wafer, utilizing mainstream Si-based technology. Photonics integrated circuits (PIC) offer several advantages over traditional integrated circuits: faster data transfer speeds, lower power consumpt... » read more

Simulation: Go Parallel Or Go Home


Although complemented by other valuable technologies, functional simulation remains at the heart of semiconductor verification. Every chip project still develops a testbench, usually compliant with the Universal Verification Methodology (UVM), and a large test suite. Constrained-random stimulus generation has largely replaced hand-crafted tests, but at the expense of much more simulation time. ... » read more

New Parasitic Extraction Requirements In Custom Design For The Next Wave Of SoCs


Fast growing markets like 5G, biotechnology, AI, and automotive are driving the new wave in semiconductor design and the need for highly integrated system on chip (SoCs). Power management, sensors, RF and precision analog functionality are all integrated on the same substrate which poses new challenges for custom design tools. Specifically, there are new challenges for parasitic extraction that... » read more

AI Chips Driving Need For New Test Implementation Methodologies


Artificial intelligence has never been more in the news than it is today.  From picking stock market investments to autonomous driving, we have heard about what AI can do when it works and what happens when it goes awry. The consequences are huge if AI doesn’t work which puts a lot of pressure on hardware engineers to ensure that their chips can be extensively tested for proper and safe func... » read more

Static Verification Of Low Power Designs


Are there any chips designed today that don’t have limitations on their power consumption? For smartphones and tablets, increasing the time between charges is a clear product differentiator and a frequent design goal. Power consumption is also an issue for Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, many of which are in inaccessible locations where battery replacement or recharge is difficult. Even com... » read more

Functional Safety Implementation Goes Mainstream


Electronics engineers are being thrust into the automotive market like never before. The move to electrify automobiles, along with the advent of self-driving cars, means that silicon designers will be designing ever more sophisticated automotive ICs. But cars aren’t like most other electronic systems; it’s imperative that they cause no harm should they fail. This brings us to the realm o... » read more

No More Pizza! The Power Of HPC To Answer: “What’s For Dinner?”


The other night my wife and I were trying to pick a place we could both agree on for dinner. If you’ve ever been in this situation, you know it can be a difficult problem to solve. I decided to short circuit the usual torture by asking our virtual assistant for a solution. “Hey [Virtual Assistant], where’s a good place to eat?” Thus ensued 15 minutes of intermittent, wrong answers, misc... » read more

Clock Domain Crossing Signoff Through Static-Formal-Simulation


By Sudeep Mondal and Sean O'Donohue Clocking issues are one of the most common reasons for costly design re-spins. This has been the driving factor in the ever-increasing demand for Clock Domain Crossing (CDC) analysis tools. Today, the majority of IP and SoC teams are focusing on “Structural CDC” analysis, which is important but not sufficient. Structural CDC analysis ensures that the d... » read more

Which Glitch Is Which?


Glitch is a commonly used term in modern vernacular, used to identify unexpected problems in everything from the space race, web site down time, or a crash of your latest mobile phone app. In electronics design glitch has a more specific meaning, referring to unnecessary signal transitions in a combinational circuit. Eliminating this extra switching activity can save power consumption, especial... » read more

Automation And Correct By Construction Will Empower 3D-IC Adoption


When research on 3D ICs was in full swing around 2009, I had been researching on how through-silicon-via (TSV) was related to thermal in a semiconductor chip-making company, and it seemed logical that 3D ICs would become mainstream. However, during the past 10 years, use of 3D stacked die has been applied to only a few applications, such as memory or image sensors, and the 2.5D solution using i... » read more

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