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Cutting Clock Costs On The Bleeding Edge Of Process Nodes


In a recent study done by McKinsey and IDC, we see that physical design and verification costs are increasing exponentially with shrinking transistor sizes. As figure 1 shows, physical design (PD) and pre-silicon verification costs are doubling each process leap. As companies leap from node to leading node, a natural question arises. Why is it becoming harder and more expensive to tapeout a chi... » read more

Customization, Heterogenous Integration, And Brute Force Verification


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss why new approaches are required for heterogeneous designs, with Bari Biswas, senior vice president for the Silicon Realization Group at Synopsys; John Lee, general manager and vice president of the Ansys Semiconductor business unit; Michael Jackson, corporate vice president for R&D at Cadence; Prashant Varshney, head of product for Microsoft Azu... » read more

Unknowns Driving Up The Cost Of Auto IC Reliability


Automotive chipmakers are considering a variety of options to improve the reliability of ICs used for everything from sensors to artificial intelligence. But collectively they could boost the number of process steps, increase the time spent in manufacturing and packaging, and stir up concerns about the amount of data that needs to be collected, shared, and stored. Accounting for advanced pro... » read more

Reliability Concerns Shift Left Into Chip Design


Demand for lower defect rates and higher yields is increasing, in part because chips are now being used for safety- and mission-critical applications, and in part because it's a way of offsetting rising design and manufacturing costs. What's changed is the new emphasis on solving these problems in the initial design. In the past, defectivity and yield were considered problems for the fab. Re... » read more

Challenges At 3/2nm


David Fried, vice president of computational products at Lam Research, talks about issues at upcoming process nodes, the move to EUV lithography and nanosheet transistors, and how process variation can affect yield and device performance. » read more

Last-Level Cache


Kurt Shuler, vice president of marketing at Arteris IP, explains how to reduce latency and improve performance with last-level cache in order to avoid sending large amounts of data to external memory, and how to ensure quality of service on a chip by taking into account contention for resources. » read more

Improving Circuit Reliability


Carey Robertson, product marketing director at Mentor, a Siemens Business, examines reliability at advanced and mainstream nodes, particularly in automotive and industrial applications, what’s driving growing concern about the reliability and fidelity of analog circuits, and the impact of running circuits for longer periods of time under different voltage and environmental conditions. » read more

Multi-Physics At 5/3nm


Joao Geada, chief technologist at ANSYS, talks about why timing, process, voltage, and temperature no longer can be considered independently of each other at the most advanced nodes, and why it becomes more critical as designs shrink from 7nm to 5nm and eventually to 3nm. In addition, more chips are being customized, and more of those chips are part of broader systems that may involve an AI com... » read more

Power Budgets At 3nm And Beyond


There is high confidence that digital logic will continue to shrink at least to 3nm, and possibly down to 1.5nm. Each of those will require significant changes in how design teams approach power. This is somewhat evolutionary for most chipmakers. Five years ago there were fewer than a handful of power experts in most large organizations. Today, everyone deals with power in one way or another... » read more

Machine Learning In The Fab


Machine learning is exploding, especially where there are massive amounts of data to contend with and lots of potential interactions. This leads to two obvious insertion points in the semiconductor field. One is on the design side, where just getting an advanced design to function is an enormous challenge. That challenge increases as the need for reliability in some market increases. It's d... » read more

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