Quantum Computing Becoming Real


Quantum computing will begin rolling out in increasingly useful ways over the next few years, setting the stage for what ultimately could lead to a shakeup in high-performance computing and eventually in the cloud. Quantum computing has long been viewed as some futuristic research project with possible commercial applications. It typically needs to run at temperatures close to absolute zero,... » read more

Dealing With Resistance In Chips


Chipmakers continue to scale the transistor at advanced nodes, but they are struggling to maintain the same pace with the other two critical parts of the device—the contacts and interconnects. That’s beginning to change, however. In fact, at 10nm/7nm, chipmakers are introducing new topologies and materials such as cobalt, which promises to boost the performance and reduce unwanted resist... » read more

Defining Edge Memory Requirements


Defining edge computing memory requirements is a growing problem for chipmakers vying for a piece of this market, because it varies by platform, by application, and even by use case. Edge computing plays a role in artificial intelligence, automotive, IoT, data centers, as well as wearables, and each has significantly different memory requirements. So it's important to have memory requirement... » read more

IoT Wireless Battles Ahead


"The good thing about standards is that there are so many to choose from." – Andrew S. Tanebaum The extended version of that quote adds "furthermore, if you do not like any of them, you can just wait for next year's model." That could not be truer when it comes to IoT and wireless connectivity. Every standards group is rushing to create new versions of existing standards that use less p... » read more

CEO Outlook On Chip Industry


Semiconductor Engineering sat down with Wally Rhines, president and CEO of Mentor, a Siemens Business; Simon Segars, CEO of Arm; Grant Pierce, CEO of Sonics; and Dean Drako, CEO of IC Manage. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. To view part one, click here. Part two is here. L-R: Dean Drako, Grant Pierce, Wally Rhines, Simon Segars. Photo: Paul Cohen/ESD Alliance SE: Securit... » read more

Chip Dis-Integration


Just because something can be done does not always mean that it should be done. One segment of the semiconductor industry is learning the hard way that continued chip integration has a significant downside. At the same time, another another group has just started to see the benefits of consolidating functionality onto a single substrate. Companies that have been following Moore's Law and hav... » read more

Near-Threshold Issues Deepen


Complex issues stemming from near-threshold computing, where the operating voltage and threshold voltage are very close together, are becoming more common at each new node. In fact, there are reports that the top five mobile chip companies, all with chips at 10/7nm, have had performance failures traced back to process variation and timing issues. Once a rather esoteric design technique, near... » read more

Complexity, Reliability And Cost


Peter Schneider, director of Fraunhofer's Engineering of Adaptive Systems Division, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about future challenges in complexity, time to market and reliability issues, advanced packaging architectures, and the impact of billions of connected devices. What follows are excerpts of that discussion. SE: What is the biggest challenge you see in the semico... » read more

Advanced Packaging Confusion


Advanced packaging is exploding in all directions. There are more chipmakers utilizing different packaging options, more options for the packages themselves, and a confusing array of descriptions and names being used for all of these. Several years ago, there were basically two options on the table, 3D-ICs and 2.5D. But as chipmakers began understanding the difficulty, cost and reduced benef... » read more

Farming Goes High-Tech


Data from dirt — literally — is enabling farmers to perform detailed analysis to make their farming practices smarter, more efficient, and significantly more productive. Companies in every market are leveraging data to their business advantage, and the agricultural sector is no different. Even the venture capital community has taken note. According to ABI Research, some sizeable venture ... » read more

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