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Sensors Will Proliferate In SoCs


No one likes being put on the spot, and yet we all like a forecast…and as we all know, the only guarantee with a forecast is that it is wrong. Sports commentators have carved out a special niche for themselves with the ‘commentators curse:’ just as they extol the virtues of an individual or a team, the sporting gods prove them wrong in spectacular fashion! Governments are no better: econo... » read more

A Historical Case For Precision


We take for granted today the staggering precision of modern technology. Cars, electronics, robots, and medical equipment all come off the factory floor composed of effortlessly interchangeable parts, but this was not always the case. In the late 18th century most things that required any kind of precision were made by hand, one notable example being the flintlock musket. You see, back then if ... » read more

Managing Worst Case Power Conditions


With each new technology node, especially FinFET, the dynamic conditions within a chip are changing and becoming more complex in terms of process speeds, thermal activity and supply variation. Dennard scaling brought about the ability for power to be scaled down with each successive node so that power per unit area stayed roughly constant. However, as highlighted by John Hennessy at last y... » read more

‘Speak No Evil’ And SoC Problems


In the first of this blog trilogy, 'Are you listening,' I looked at not waiting for hindsight to be wise after the event, instead make use of what’s available and act ahead of time. In the second, 'See no evil,' we bizarrely saw how Sir Francis Drake, Admiral Nelson and Clint Eastwood all had something in common with Mizaru, one of the 3 wise monkeys (Kikazaru and Iwazaru being the other two)... » read more

“See No Evil” Shouldn’t Apply To SoC Design


In the first part of this blog series, Talking Sense with Moortec…’Are you listening’, I looked at not waiting for hindsight to be wise after the event, instead make use of what’s available and act ahead of time. There’s a Japanese maxim, depicting three ‘wise’ monkeys… Kikazaru, Mizaru, and Iwazaru, better known as ‘hear no evil, see no evil and speak no evil’. If they we... » read more

Monitoring For In-Die Process Speed Detection


Chip designers working on advanced nodes typically include a fabric of sensors spread across the die for a number of very specific reasons. In this, the second of a three-part blog series, we explore some of the key applications and benefits of these types of sensing solutions. In this installment, the focus is In-Die Process Speed Detection and why understanding in-chip process speed detecti... » read more

Benefits Of In-Chip Thermal Sensing


The latest SoCs on advanced semiconductor nodes typically include a fabric of sensors spread across the die, and for good reason. But why and what are the benefits? This first blog of a three-part series explores some of the key applications for in-chip thermal sensing and why embedding in-chip monitoring IP is an essential step to maximize performance and reliability and minimize power, or a... » read more

Data Center Hyperscaling


As we move in to 2020 it’s clear that every sector of industry, including the semiconductor industry, will have a responsibility to address growing environmental concerns. We should be aware that as our sector underpins the growth in AI, 5G telecommunications, crypto-currency and high performance compute applications, it is predicted that by 2030 energy consumption attributable to data center... » read more

Avoiding Gloom With Better Knowledge


The rate of product development is facing very real challenges as the pace of silicon technology evolution begins to slow. Today, we are squeezing the most out of transistor physics, which is essentially derived from 60-year-old CMOS technology. To maintain the pace of Moore’s law, it is predicted that in 2030 we will need transistors to be a sixth of their current size. Reducing transistor s... » read more

The Future Of Embedded Monitoring, Part 1


Shall I compare thee to a…Rolls Royce jet engine? ‘There is a new era dawning whereby deeply embedded sensing within all technology will bring about great benefit for the reliability and performance of semiconductor-based products.’ These were my words during a presentation to an industry audience in China back in September 2015. During that same presentation, somewhat to the consterna... » read more

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