BRUSSELS -- Alcatel Microelectronics here today announced a new 0.35-micron high-voltage IC technology, which is capable of integrating mixed-signal blocks, logic, embedded 32-bit microcontroller, and circuits with up to 80-volt functionality for automotive applications.
"The I3T-based circuits will fit the requirements of the new 42-V battery concept perfectly," said Tony Denayer, general manager of Alcatel's automotive and peripherals semiconductor business. "I3T will be incorporated in automotive equipment for powertrain, body and safety applications, as well as motor and head drivers for the printer market," he predicted.
I3T is the successor to Alcatel's current I2T series, which is based on 0.7-micron mixed-mode CMOS. The I2T technology is used in automotive and computer peripheral ICs but it is limited to 30-K gates of logic. The new 0.35-micron technology increases the logic integration capability to 150-K gates, including a RISC processor core from ARM Ltd., according to Alcatel.
The new high-voltage technology is modular, and it will come in several versions, Alcatel said. The first version of I3T will be optimized for 80-volt functions. It will be available in the first quarter of 2002. Alcatel said it plans to release optimized versions for other circuit functions in the next six months.
The release of the I3T technology is part of Alcatel's efforts to increase its automotive chip business. The semiconductor arm of communications giant Alcatel S.A. in Paris is rolling out new standard automotive ICs as well as offering its existing custom and ASIC products. It is also attempting to break into the North American automotive market after establishing itself in Europe during the past decade (see Oct. 10 story).
Alcatel said its I3T-based circuits can incorporate a 32-bit microcontroller, memory blocks, bus protocol controllers, I/O features and high-voltage functions, such as motor controllers. The technology features improved HV DMOS switches with lower on-resistance (80 milliohms/mm2 at 40 volts to 160 milliohms/mm2 at 80 V). Embedded flash, high-density ROM, RAM, and one-time programmable EPROM are also available in the I3T technology, said the company.