GlobalFoundries announces 28nm flow designs -

GlobalFoundries announced its 28nm digital design flows which will enable chipmakers to keep working on the next generation of mobile and consumer electronic devices, and more, says GloFo.

The firm has worked in collaboration with EDA providers on the flows which are based on GlobalFoundries’ Super Low Power (SLP) technology with Gate First High-k Metal Gate (HKMG).

The 28nm process will eventually become standard, with firms such as the related AMD supposedly utilising them in their upcoming Mobility Radeon HD 7000 family of graphics processors.

It is noted that all of GlobalFoundries' 28nm technologies employ the Gate First approach to HKMG, which is considered by GloFo to be superior to other foundry 28nm technologies in both scalability and manufacturability.  According to the firm, the Gate First offering shares the process flow, design flexibility, design elements and benefits of all previous nodes based upon Poly SiON gates.

In the past traditional foundry design flows have not taken into account the growing interaction of design and manufacturing at advanced technology nodes, says GloFo.

Global Foundries has claimed to have addressed such issues by emphasising early collaborative development with providers of EDA software and IP to validate design methodologies against real silicon.

It is also said that the firm’s silicon validated method goes beyond standard Design Rule Checking, using two dimensional shape-based pattern-matching to enable up to a 100-fold speed improvement in identifying complex manufacturing issues, which it claims it does without sacrificing accuracy. 

GlobalFoundries worked alongside a number of other companies to assist customer design for the 28nm process, namely ARM, Cadence, Apache, Magma, Synopsys and Mentor.

Cadence was involved with the development of a 9mm multimillion transistor designed to highlight and showcase advanced 28nm chip implementation techniques.  The design is being released to manufacturing and is expected to be silicon validated in the first half of 2011. 

The full design, implementation scripts, and a set of recommended methodology white papers on 28nm routing and DFM will be available to customers starting in the first quarter of 2011.

Synopsys meanwhile collaborated to develop a 28nm-SLP design flow based on the Synopsys Galaxy Implementation Platform, together with a 28nm-SLP Foundry-Ready System technology plug-in for the Lynx Design System.

Apache’s  focus will be on on delivering products that address the critical design challenges of power, noise, and reliability.

*EyeSee 28nm was about the size of the CES GloFo party, at the Palms casino. It finished by 9pm before the MSI party kicked off. However, the GloFo party pots of mac and cheese were at a truly innovative 20nm. In the swag bag was: a poker chip, a deck of cards and a glossy propaganda leaflet. Thanks GloFo!