Week In Review: Auto, Security, Pervasive Computing

Xilinx AI edge ACAP chips; German quantum coalition.


Pervasive computing — IoT, edge, cloud, data center, and back
Xilinx introduced its Versal AI Edge series of adaptive SoCs, or adaptive compute acceleration platforms (ACAPs), that can be manage AI-ML workloads in edge applications. The chip is designed for flexible, low latency, edge applications where algorithms may need updating. The software programmable chips have an AI Engine-ML feature that clocked 4X faster AI per watt in its machine learning inference than a previous AI Engine architecture, according to a press release. Accelerator RAM with an enhanced memory hierarchy for evolving AI algorithms contributes to the 4X AI performance-per-watt versus GPUs.

Ten German companies formed the Quantum Technology and Application Consortium (QUTAC), which will support efforts to develop quantum computing industrial uses. BASF, BMW Group, Boehringer Ingelheim, Bosch, Infineon, Merck, Munich Re, SAP, Siemens, and Volkswagen are the founding members of the consortium. Similar consortia exist, such as the Quantum Economic Development Consortium (QED-C) in the U.S.

The United States Senate passed a $52 billion in incentives for the U.S. semiconductor research and manufacturing. The industry organization SEMI applauded the move and is urging the house take action.

Electric car company Tesla unveiled its Model S Plaid, which is capable of 200 miles per hour, has a 390-mile battery, can accelerated 0-60 in less than 2 secs, and can run video games with Playstation 5-like performance, said Elon Musk. That assumes you are not driving. The car company also raised the price on the vehicle by $10,000. AMD’s Ryzen processor and a discrete AMD RDNA 2 GPU are running the infotainment system.

Black Sesame Technologies licensed Arteris IP’s FlexNoC interconnect IP and the accompanying FlexNoC Resilience Package for use in its ISO 26262-compliant automotive advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) chips. Black Sesame Technologies is an AI companies founded in 2016 in Shanghai. The company focuses on image processing, perception algorithms, and SoC design, with expertise in automotive. Black Sesame released its first AI chip in 2019, followed by its second AI chip — which supports L3 autonomous driving — in June 2020.

Infineon is now the number one automotive chip supplier, according to Strategy Analytics annual assessment. The acquisition of Cypress Semiconductor pushed Infineon higher than NXP.

Russia will be supplying Iran with an advanced satellite system.

Air-taxi development is heating up in the U.K., Brazil, and U.S., reports Bloomberg.

Synopsys acquired Code Dx, a company that provides an enterprise application vulnerability manager that can helps automate finding, prioritizing, and fixing software vulnerabilities. The tool, which works with many popular third-party and open-source security tools, will be part of Synopsys’ portfolio of security options, enabling the consolidation of risk reporting and prioritization from over 75 security and development tools. Code Dx was a member of the Synopsys Technology Alliance Partner (TAP) program and was already working with Synopsys, so Synopsys says it can offer Code Dx in its tools immediately. Code Dx will complement Synopsys’ recently introduced Intelligent Orchestration, which automates running security tests.

People, companies
Siemens has acquired the proFPGA product family and team from PRO DESIGN, an electronic engineering and manufacturing services company based in Germany. The proFPGA product is a field programmable gate array (FPGA) desktop prototyping technology already used in Siemens’ EDA portion of its Xcelerator portfolio. With the acquisition, Siemens Digital Industries Software will integrate proFPGA into its Veloce hardware-assisted verification system of ICs. PRO DESIGN, which specializes in FPGA-based designs, will remain an independent company.

Brewer Science has formed the American Materials Technology Partnership to push for materials innovation in the United States. The partnership will bring together U.S. microelectronics to bolster, develop, and innovate in materials needed for the semiconductor industry.

Xilinx acquired Silexica, a C/C++ programming and analysis tools company that developed a tool suite for building applications on FPGAs and Adaptive SoCs. Xilinx will integrate Silexica’s SLX FPGA tool suite into the Xilinx Vitis unified software platform.

Read the most recent Automotive, Security, & Pervasive Computing newsletter. Check out job, event, and webinar Boards: Find industry jobs and upcoming conferences and webinars all in one place on Semiconductor Engineering. Knowledge Center: Boost your semiconductor industry knowledge. Videos: See the latest Semiconductor Engineering videos.

July 26 is the call for papers deadline for IEEE’s International Conference on Physical Assurance & Inspection Of Electronics (PAINE), which will be held 11/30-12/2/21. Speakers from DARPA, Navy, Intel and others. Topics include PCB trust & assurance, counterfeiting, fault injection assessment and countermeasures and more.


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