What Machine Learning Can Do In Fabs


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss the issues and challenges with machine learning in semiconductor manufacturing with Kurt Ronse, director of the advanced lithography program at Imec; Yudong Hao, senior director of marketing at Onto Innovation; Romain Roux, data scientist at Mycronic; and Aki Fujimura, chief executive of D2S. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. L-R:... » read more

Memory Issues For AI Edge Chips


Several companies are developing or ramping up AI chips for systems on the network edge, but vendors face a variety of challenges around process nodes and memory choices that can vary greatly from one application to the next. The network edge involves a class of products ranging from cars and drones to security cameras, smart speakers and even enterprise servers. All of these applications in... » read more

New Architectural Issues Facing Auto Ecosystem


As chips bound for the automotive world move to small process nodes, including 5nm and below, the automotive ecosystem is wrestling with both scaling issues and challenges related to architecting safety-critical systems using fewer chips. This may sound counterintuitive, because one of the main reasons automotive chip providers are moving to smaller nodes is to reduce the number of chips in ... » read more

Week In Review: Design, Low Power


Presto Engineering, an outsourced operations provider to semiconductor and IoT device manufacturers, acquired the DELTA Microelectronics business unit of FORCE Technology. The acquisition adds DELTA's ASIC design and manufacturing to its portfolio. The two companies will retain a strong relationship: FORCE Technology has become a shareholder of Presto Engineering and Juan Farré, FORCE’s CTO,... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers A fire broke out this week at a joint NAND flash fab between Western Digital (WD) and Kioxia. Kioxia is the former Toshiba NAND flash unit that was recently spun out by the Japanese company. “On Monday, January 6, (morning, January 7 local time) a small fire occurred at one of our joint venture facilities in Yokkaichi, Japan. Local firefighters quickly extinguished the fire, and w... » read more

What Worked, What Didn’t In 2019


2019 has been a tough year for semiconductor companies from a revenue standpoint, especially for memory companies. On the other hand, the EDA industry has seen another robust growth year. A significant portion of this disparity can be attributed to the number of emerging technology areas for semiconductors, none of which has reached volume production yet. Some markets continue to struggle, a... » read more

What’s Next For High Bandwidth Memory


A surge in data is driving the need for new IC package types with more and faster memory in high-end systems. But there are a multitude of challenges on the memory, packaging and other fronts. In systems, for example, data moves back and forth between the processor and DRAM, which is the main memory for most chips. But at times this exchange causes latency and power consumption, sometimes re... » read more

A New Dawn For IP


The IP industry is changing again. The concept started as build once, use everywhere, but today it is more like architect once, customize everywhere. Few designs can afford sub-optimal IP for their application. The need for customized IP is driven by both leading-edge designs and the trailing markets, although for different reasons. While this customization is causing IP companies to transfo... » read more

Week In Review: IoT, Security, Auto


Internet of Things SiFive is bringing RISC-V to IoT makers and university developers through the RISC-V-based SiFive Learn Initiative, an open-source learning package that can be used to create a low-cost RISC-V hardware compatible with AWS IoT Core. The development platform SiFive Learn Inventor has a software package and education enablement course. It includes: The programmable SiFive Lear... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Packaging and test TrendForce has released its top-10 OSAT rankings in terms of sales for the third quarter of 2019. ASE was in first place in the rankings, followed by Amkor and JCET. “According to the latest research from TrendForce, the decline in the global OSAT industry showed signs of a gradual halt in 3Q19, since the drop in memory prices began to slow down, and smartphone sales stead... » read more

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