MUNICH, Germany Mobile technology provider Qualcomm has joined IMEC's Technology-Aware Design Program (TAD). The Belgian research center and the U.S. fabless chip vendor will collaborate on innovative circuit and system design methodologies.
The increased variability observed in aggressively scaled designs and interconnects make it increasingly necessary to apply innovative design methodologies, IMEC said. For this reason, the research institute has set up the TAD program to develop design solutions that address scaling challenges for the 45nm node and beyond.
The program focuses on development of advanced analysis techniques that model process variability to enable designers to optimize the entire system design for energy consumption and yield. The ultimate goal is to enable manufacture-aware sign-off of predicted process variability at system design level.
For Qualcomm, the program participation is in line with the company's 'Integrated Fabless Manufacturing' business model, explained Behrooz Abdi, general manager of Qualcomm's CDMA Technologies. "We are pleased to be a part of IMEC's TAD program, collaborating on next-generation design flows and ultimately optimizing results," the manager said.
The TAD program exists already since 2001, an IMEC spokesperson explained. However, it has recently been brought into the institute's Apollo research program, the successor of IMEC's M4 program. Qualcomm is the first external partner to join the program.