Design Rule Complexity Rising


Variation, edge placement error, and a variety of other issues at new process geometries are forcing chipmakers and EDA vendors to confront a growing volume of increasingly complex, and sometimes interconnected design rules to ensure chips are manufacturable. The number of rules has increased to the point where it's impossible to manually keep track of all of them, and that has led to new pr... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


R&D Late last month, the U.S. Congress finalized the federal spending for the remainder of the fiscal year. This includes R&D spending as well. “There was grave concern over the future of federal spending with the release of the president’s FY 2018 budget, which would have cut the National Science Foundation (NSF) budget by 11% and National Institutes of Standards & Technology (NIST) spend... » read more

Wireless Test Faces New Challenges


Your mobile phone is far more complex than it was even five years ago, and it’s about to become even more complex with new wireless technologies. That has set off a scramble among test equipment vendors to come up with solutions, methodologies and equipment that is affordable, effective and reliable enough to make sure all of this technology works as planned—and that it continues to work th... » read more

The Week in Review: IoT


Investment Microsoft this week said it will spend $5 billion over four years on Internet of Things programs in research, development, and partner enablement. The company previously spent $1.5 billion on developing IoT technology. The move could pay dividends for the Microsoft Azure cloud platform and lead to wider use of Azure Stack, which pairs Microsoft software with hardware from approved p... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Trade President Trump this week announced his decisions on the actions the administration will take in response to China’s alleged unfair trade practices covered in the USTR Section 301 investigation of “China’s Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation.” Trump has proposed import tariffs that amount to about $60 billion on pro... » read more

The Bumpy Road To 5G


5G is coming, but not everywhere, not all at once, and not the fastest version of this technology right away. In fact, the probable scenario is that 5G will be rolled out first in densely populated urban areas, starting in 2020 or 2021, with increasingly widespread adoption over the next decade after that. But 5G is unlikely to ever completely replace 4G LTE, just as a smart phone today roll... » read more

Finding Faulty Auto Chips


The next wave of automotive chips for assisted and autonomous driving is fueling the development of new approaches in a critical field called outlier detection. KLA-Tencor, Optimal+, as well as Mentor, a Siemens Business, and others are entering or expanding their efforts in the outlier detection market or related fields. Used in various industries for several years, outlier detection is one... » 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

Transistor Options Beyond 3nm


Despite a slowdown in chip scaling amid soaring costs, the industry continues to search for a new transistor type 5 to 10 years out—particularly for the 2nm and 1nm nodes. Specifically, the industry is pinpointing and narrowing down the transistor options for the next major nodes after 3nm. Those two nodes, called 2.5nm and 1.5nm, are slated to appear in 2027 and 2030, respectively, accord... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers China has struck again, as the nation continues to acquire semiconductor technology. In December, Silicon Labs announced plans to acquire Sigma Designs for $282 million. The deal involves Sigma’s Z-Wave chip business. Now, Sigma Designs has sold its connectivity chip business unit to Integrated Silicon Solution Inc. (ISSI). In 2015, a Chinese consortium of investors led by Uph... » read more

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