Utilizing Computational Memory


For systems to become faster and consume less power, they must stop wasting the power required to move data around and start adding processing near memory. This approach has been proven, and products are entering the marketplace designed to fill a number of roles. Processing near memory, also known as computational memory, has been hiding in the shadows for more than a decade. Ever since the... » read more

Solving The Memory Bottleneck


Chipmakers are scrambling to solve the bottleneck between processor and memory, and they are turning out new designs based on different architectures at a rate no one would have anticipated even several months ago. At issue is how to boost performance in systems, particularly those at the edge, where huge amounts of data need to be processed locally or regionally. The traditional approach ha... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) has satisfied all closing conditions for the full acquisition of Mie Fujitsu Semiconductor Ltd. (MIFS), the former 300mm wafer foundry joint venture between UMC and Fujitsu Semiconductor Ltd. (FSL). The completion of the acquisition is scheduled for Oct. 1. In 2014, FSL and UMC agreed for UMC to acquire a 15.9% stake in MIFS from FSL through pr... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers Foxconn is in talks to build a fab in Zhuhai, China, according to a report from Nikkei. The fab, to cost $9 billion, would make chips for Foxconn and outside companies, the report said, which says the company will enter the foundry business. The European Commission has approved funding for 1.75 billion euros ($2 billion) of public investment for projects in the microelectronics... » read more

Bugs That Kill


Are simulation-resistant superbugs stifling innovation? That is a question Craig Shirley, president and CEO of Oski Technology, asked a collection of semiconductor executives over dinner. Semiconductor Engineering was invited to hear that discussion and to present the key points of the discussion. To promote free conversation, the participants, who are listed below, asked not to be quoted di... » read more

Memory Startups To Watch


The next-generation memories are finally ramping up after years’ of delays and promises. Intel, for one, is shipping 3D XPoint, a next-generation technology based on phase-change memory. In addition, the big foundries are readying embedded MRAM. And, of course, there are a number of other players in the next-generation memory arena. There are also a number of startups that are flying un... » read more

Embedded Flash Scaling Limits


Embedded nonvolatile flash memory has played a key role in chips for years, but the technology is beginning to face some scaling and cost roadblocks and it’s not clear what comes next. Embedded flash is used in several markets, such as automotive, consumer and industrial. But the automotive sector appears to be the most concerned about the future of the technology. Typically, a car incorpo... » read more

Will China Succeed In Memory?


China's fledging memory makers are expected to reach a major milestone and move into initial production this year, although vendors are already running into various roadblocks. China's domestic vendors are focusing on two markets, 3D NAND and DRAM. In both cases local vendors are either behind in technology, struggling to develop these products, or both. And one vendor recently was hit with ... » read more

Predictions: Manufacturing, Devices And Companies


Some predictions are just wishful thinking, but most of these are a lot more thoughtful. They project what needs to happen for various markets or products to become successful. Those far reaching predictions may not fully happen within 2018, but we give everyone the chance to note the progress made towards their predictions at the end of the year. (See Reflection On 2017: Design And EDA and Man... » read more

A New Memory Contender?


Momentum is building for a new class of ferroelectric memories that could alter the next-generation memory landscape. Generally, ferroelectrics are associated with a memory type called ferroelectric RAMs (FRAMs). Rolled out by several vendors in the late 1990s, FRAMs are low-power, nonvolatile devices, but they are also limited to niche applications and unable to scale beyond 130nm. While... » read more

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