The trouble with process technology…

Manners, David
November 2005
Electronics Weekly;11/16/2005, Issue 2218, p18
Trade Publication
This article informs that several leading electronics companies are now undertaking the transition from 90nm to 65nm chip processes. Wim Roelandts, CEO of Xilinx Inc., says that it's not going to be easy which expects its first 65nm products to be out next year. In recent process generations the shrink has been the relatively simple part. The difficult part has been the integration of new materials, the correlation of design and manufacturing, the management of switching off power to different parts of the chip, and the integration of different transistor types and different oxide thicknesses. Other techniques used by Xilinx to reduce power are switching off circuitry at various levels, using its proprietary synthesis tools which reduce power by up to 20 per cent, and using strained silicon which does not help the power problem, but improves performance allowing power inputs to be reduced.


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