Week In Review: Design, Low Power

Faster test time; FPGA simulation acceleration; quantum-photonics for security; Rambus results.


Mentor unveiled Tessent Streaming Scan Network software for its Tessent TestKompress software. The new solution includes embedded infrastructure and automation that decouples core-level DFT requirements from the chip-level test delivery resources for a simplified bottom-up DFT flow. The bus-based scan data distribution architecture enables simultaneous testing of any number of cores and supports tiled designs and optimization for identical cores. It is included in Samsung Foundry’s reference flow.

Aldec introduced a HES-DVM simulation acceleration flow for Microchip’s Polarfire, SmartFusion2, and RTSX/RTAX FPGA designs using Aldec’s HES-MPF500-M2S150 prototyping board.

Auto, IoT, Security
CEA-Leti is working on a quantum-photonics platform aimed at ensuring ultra-secure data transmission. Based on CEA-Leti’s silicon-photonics platform complemented with new quantum characterization equipment, the the three-year project will fabricate silicon-photonics circuits that generate single photons, manipulate those photons with linear optical components such as slow and rapid phase shifters and detect them with superconducting nanowire single-photon detectors (SNSPD). The project will build demonstrators for transmitting and receiving information in a quantum-based system, as well as integrating the qubit transmitter and the qubit receiver on one unique platform.

Fraunhofer IIS and Leistungszentrum Elektroniksysteme (LZE) debuted LoPAN (Long Range Personal Area Network), a new wireless technology targeting smart buildings. LoPAN can link up and network any number of sensors via a single base station and uses telegram splitting, which divides the sensor message up into smaller packages and sends them in staggered transmissions over multiple frequency bands for less interference. It has a range of several kilometers.

Mentor introduced Vehicle Cockpit Consolidation Solutions, or VCO2S. The software, systems, and hardware service offering integrates instrument cluster and infotainment systems on a single high-compute ECU that supports multiple safety domain levels and features such as graphics, video, and audio sharing.

Bosch licensed Arteris IP’s FlexNoC Interconnect IP and the accompanying Resilience Package for use in multiple ISO 26262-compliant automotive projects. Bosch cited ease and speed of assembling complex chips with the interconnect as well as functional safety mechanisms.

NeuLinker selected Codasip’s Bk5 RISC-V-based core and the Codasip Studio customization toolset for a project that aims to enable AI functionality on IoT devices and to accelerate security management and privacy protection of blockchain data. NeuLinker cited high performance and customizability along with a mature development environment and good technical support.

D2H Advanced Technologies (D2H) and Ansys teamed up to provide NASCAR racing teams an automated simulation workflow for improving the aerodynamics of high-performance stock cars without the need for wind tunnel testing.

Numbers & Markets
Rambus reported third quarter 2020 financial results with revenue of $56.9 million, down 0.9% from the same quarter last year. On a GAAP basis, the company saw a loss per share of $0.11 in Q3 2020, compared to a loss per share of $0.16 in Q3 2019. In particular, Rambus’ memory interface chip business had a strong quarter, with a 39% increase in quarterly revenue year over year.

Apple may be facing a shortage of power management chips for its iPhone 12, according to Bloomberg. Pandemic-related supply chain disruption, increased demand, and stockpiling brought on by U.S.-China trade restrictions were blamed for the shortage, which may last for the next two quarters.

SK Hynix has applied for a license to supply chips to Huawei, Global Times reported. The memory maker recently showed a 118% growth in net profit on Q3 earnings. “Huawei could account for around 10% of the total sales of SK Hynix,” said Geng Bo, a vice secretary-general of the China Solid State Lighting Alliance. “SK Hynix’ business will face significant challenge if it doesn’t obtain a permit from the US to continue the supply.”

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Coming up soon is the WE20: Conference For Women Engineers on Nov. 2-30; the SC20: International Conference For HPC, Networking, Storage & Analysis on Nov. 9-19; and the Flash Memory Summit on Nov. 10-12.

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