More Semiconductor Data Moving To Cloud


The cloud is booming. After years of steady growth it has begun to spike, creating new options for design, test, analytics and AI, all of which have an impact on every segment of the semiconductor industry. The initial idea behind the cloud is that it would supplement processing done on premises, adding extra processing power wherever necessary, such as in the verification and debug stages o... » read more

How Many Test Miles Make A Vehicle Safe?


The road to reliable safety testing of autonomous vehicles (AVs) is shifting left. Standards groups are beginning to publish functional safety standards that could make it possible to verify what a machine-learning AV pilot application will do in a traffic situation even before hardware or software is released from validation testing. This kind of approach has been possible for some time in ... » read more

Using Better Data To Shorten Test Time


The combination of machine learning plus more sensors embedded into IC manufacturing equipment is creating new possibilities for more targeted testing and faster throughput for fabs and OSATs. The goal is to improve quality and reduce the cost of manufacturing complex chips, where time spent in manufacturing is ballooning at the most advanced nodes. As the number of transistors on a die incr... » read more

Silicon Photonics Begins To Make Inroads


Integrating photons and electrons on the same die is still a long way off, but advances in packaging and improvements in silicon photonics are making it possible to use optical communication for a variety of new applications. Utilizing light-based communication between chips, or in self-contained modules, ultimately could have a big impact on chip design. Photons moving through waveguides ar... » read more

Big Shifts In Big Data


The big data market is in a state of upheaval as companies begin shifting their data strategies from "nothing" or "everything" in the cloud to a strategic mix, squeezing out middle-market players and changing what gets shared, how that data is used, and how best to secure it. This has broad implications for the whole semiconductor supply chain, because in many cases it paves the way for ... » read more

5G OTA Test Not Ready For Production


5G is poised to dominate the wireless world, but over-the-air (OTA) testing of 5G beamforming antennas is still not ready for volume production. Beamforming is a critical element in the millimeter wave version of 5G, because of the limitations of ultra-high-frequency signals. Unlike 4G and its predecessors, millimeter wave technology will not penetrate objects, so signals need to be directed... » read more

Data Confusion At The Edge


Disparities in pre-processing of data at the edge, coupled with a total lack of standardization, are raising questions about how that data will be prioritized and managed in AI and machine learning systems. Initially, the idea was that 5G would connect edge data to the cloud, where massive server farms would infer patterns from that data and send it back to the edge devices. But there is far... » read more

Inspection, Metrology Challenges Grow For SiC


Inspection and metrology are becoming more critical in the silicon carbide (SiC) industry amid a pressing need to find problematic defects in current and future SiC devices. Finding defects always has been a challenging task for SiC devices. But it’s becoming more imperative to find killer defects and reduce them as SiC device vendors begin to expand their production for the next wave of a... » read more

5G Drives New Test Approaches


Test/validation providers are claiming steady progress in the race to deliver 5G network components that support millimeter-wave as well as lower-frequency networks. Going from a state of no existing off-the-shelf test equipment suitable for 5G standalone new radio (NR), test companies are introducing equipment that can handle mmWave component testing on a limited scale. 5G is a next-generat... » read more

Challenges In Making And Testing STT-MRAM


Several chipmakers are ramping up a next-generation memory type called STT-MRAM, but there are still an assortment of manufacturing and test challenges for current and future devices. STT-MRAM, or spin-transfer torque MRAM, is attractive and gaining steam because it combines the attributes of several conventional memory types in a single device. In the works for years, STT-MRAM features the ... » read more

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