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A New Vision For Memory Chip Design And Verification


Discrete memory chips are arguably the most visible reminder of the opportunities and challenges for advanced semiconductor design. They are manufactured in huge quantities, becoming key drivers for new technology nodes and new fabrication processes. Price fluctuations have a major impact on the financial health of the electronics industry, and any shortages can shut down the manufacturing line... » read more

Modeling Chips From Atoms To Systems


Complexity in hardware design is spilling over to other disciplines, including software, manufacturing, and new materials, creating issues for how to model more data at multiple abstraction levels. Challenges are growing around which abstraction level to use for a particular stage of the design, when to use it, and which data to include. Those decisions are becoming more difficult at each ne... » read more

Influence Of SiGe On Parasitic Parameters in PMOS


In this paper, simulation-based design-technology co-optimization (DTCO) is carried out using the Coventor SEMulator3D virtual fabrication platform with its integrated electrical analysis capabilities [1]. In our study, process modeling is used to predict the sensitivity of FinFET device performance to changes in a silicon germanium epitaxial process. The simulated process is a gate-last flow p... » read more

Connecting Wafer-Level Parasitic Extraction And Netlisting


The semiconductor technology simulation world is typically divided into device-level TCAD (technology CAD) and circuit-level compact modeling. Larger EDA companies provide high-level design simulation tools that perform LVS (layout vs. schematic), DRC (design rule checking), and many other software solutions that facilitate the entire design process at the most advanced technology nodes. In thi... » read more

Five DAC Keynotes


The ending of Moore's Law may be about to create a new golden age for design, especially one fueled by artificial intelligence and machine learning. But design will become task-, application- and domain-specific, and will require that we think about the lifecycle of the products in a different way. In the future, we also will have to design for augmentation of experience, not just automation... » read more

Transistor-Level Performance Evaluation Based On Wafer-Level Process Modeling


Three years ago, I wrote a blog entitled “Linking Virtual Wafer Fabrication Modeling with Device-level TCAD Simulation,” in which I described the seamless connection between the SEMulator3D virtual wafer fabrication software platform and external third-party TCAD software. I’m now happy to report that device-level I-V performance analysis is now a built-in module within the SEMulator3D so... » read more

New Thermal Issues Emerge


Thermal monitoring is becoming more critical as gate density continues to increase at each new node and as chips are developed for safety critical markets such as automotive. This may sound counterintuitive because the whole point of device scaling is to increase gate density. But at 10/7 and 7/5nm, static current leakage is becoming a bigger issue, raising questions about how long [getkc id... » read more

Tech Talk: Substrate Noise Coupling


Roland Jancke, head of the department for design methodology for the Fraunhofer's Engineering of Adaptive Systems Division, talks with Semiconductor Engineering about the impact of substrate noise coupling on reliability of chips and how to deal with this issue. https://youtu.be/7E2rCwYr6-o » read more

Multi-Physics Combats Commoditization


The semiconductor industry has benefited greatly from developments around digital circuitry. Circuits have grown in size from a few logic gates in the 1980s to well over 1 billion today. In comparison, analog circuits have increased in size by a factor of 10. The primary reason is that digital logic managed to isolate many of the physical effects from functionality, and to provide abstractions ... » read more

Power Challenges At 10nm And Below


Current density is becoming much more problematic at 10nm and beyond, increasing the amount of power management that needs to be incorporated into each chip and boosting both design costs and time to market. Current per unit of area has been rising since 90nm, forcing design teams to leverage a number of power-related strategies such as [getkc id="143" kc_name="dynamic voltage and frequency... » read more

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