Week In Review: Auto, Security, Pervasive Computing

Synopsys pre-silicon power emulation; Xilinx composable SmartNICs; crypto controller.


Toyota Motor Corporation developed a hydrogen fuel cell (FC) system packaged in a compact module. Toyota plans to start selling it in the spring of 2021. The module can be used by other companies developing products powered by fuel cells.

Micron is sampling an ASIL D level LPDDR5. The low-power memory is qualified for automotive safety applications.

Samsung Foundry certified Synopsys IC Validator for 5nm and 4nm process technologies. Multiple customers have had successful chip tapeouts for graphics, augmented virtual reality, automotive, and high-performance computing applications. The IC Validator, which part of Synopsys’ Fusion Design and Custom Design Platforms, is the physical verification of the IC designs. It provides fast, according to a press release, DRC checking, programmable electrical rule checks, dummy metal fill, and design-for-manufacturability enhancement capabilities, and signoff accurate StarRC integration.

Amkor revealed some of its measures that helped Amkor’s production line reach Industry 4.0 levels of automation and connection for factories. Industry 4.0 factories use artificial intelligence, machine learning, and interconnected systems to automate operations while improving quality and output. The IC advanced packaging company is preparing its production for the automotive zero defects quality levels.

Pervasive computing — IoT, edge, cloud, data center, and back
Synopsys has released pre-silicon power emulation tool to help data centers and designers of AI, 5G, and mobile SoC systems get a handle on power use in multi-billion gate designs. With the ZeBu Empower Emulation System, designers can run multiple iterations per day, according to a press release. The system finds actionable power profiling in the full design and its software workload to help identify power improvements for dynamic and leakage power much earlier. The ZeBu Empower emulation system also feeds forward power-critical blocks and time windows into Synopsys’ PrimePower engine to accelerate RTL power analysis and gate-level power sign-off.

Xilinx has a new range of data center products that include composable SmartNICs. The 100Gb/s Alveo SN1000 SmartNIC now has software-defined hardware acceleration for offloading CPU intensive functions or tasks using an open architecture. “Data centers are transforming to increase networking bandwidth and optimize for workloads like artificial intelligence and real-time analytics,” said Salil Raje, executive vice president and general manager, Data Center Group at Xilinx in a press release. “These complex, compute-intensive and constantly-evolving workloads are pushing existing infrastructure to its limits and driving the need for fully composable, software-defined hardware accelerators that provide the adaptability to optimize today’s most demanding applications as well as the flexibility to quickly take on new workloads and protocols, and accelerate them at line rate.” The SN1000 has the Xilinx 16nm UltraScale+ architecture, a Xilinx XCU26 FPGA, and a 16-core Arm processor.

Multi-touch sensor technology and IC design company Nanjing Tianyihexin Electronics is using Codasip’s RISC‑V‑based core for its Hx9131, which will be used in TWS headset and intelligent wearable devices. NTE, based in China, makes sensors for multi-point, high-precision capacitive sensing for contact and non-contact multi-touch and gesture recognition. Codasip L30 will provide control functions to the overall system. Control functions include sliding, double-clicking, long-press, and other operations in the control experience for users of the TWS headset and other intelligent wearable devices.

With COVID-19 pandemic still among us, many people now prefer contactless payments instead of using cash or even cards. Infineon announced a new crypto controller platform that uses Arm’s secure chip architecture — SecurCore SC300 — on 40nm process to secure payments. The platform complies with the latest cryptological requirements for ECC and AES, according to a company press release. Wearables benefit most. The supported standards are ISO14443 type A/B, ISO18092 (NFC) for contactless and ISO7816 for contact-based interfaces.

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