LONDON – Toshiba Corp. has announced it will be shipping a structured array customizable ASIC from April 2013 that has been licensed from startup BaySand Inc.
BaySand (Morgan Hill, Calif.) provides metal-only configurable ASICs based on a metal-configurable standard cell (MCSC) architecture. This makes it possible to develop and deliver samples that require customization in just a few layers of metal with a short turnaround time of a few weeks. The claim is that structured arrays can provide the ease of development of FPGAs with a performance that is closer to that of a fully diffused system chip.
BaySand announced in October 2012 that it had reached a licensing deal with Toshiba for its technology. Under the terms of the exclusive agreement Toshiba is licensed to design, manufacture, market and distribute BaySand's MCSC products. Toshiba also made an investment in BaySand of undisclosed size.
Toshiba said that its structured arrays can be compatible with FPGAs and their creation driven by verified RTL design data from the FPGA with a turnaround time at one-fifth that of a conventional ASIC. Samples can also be delivered with the same pin layout as the FPGA.
The product uses 65-nm process technology, with a 40-nm line-up under development. Also, products with high-speed transceivers are under development, for each process.
The initial device range includes up to 30 million gates and a maximum of 20-Mbits of SRAM. Up to 1,200 I/O pins with low voltage differential signaling at DDR signaling, Toshiba said.
BaySand calls its structured arrays TeneX and claims these structured arrays offer one tenth the time to market and one tenth the non-recurring engineering cost of ASICs at one tenth the price of FPGAs. The TeneX-FA and TeneX-FX products are designed for ease of migration of designs from Altera and Xilinx FPGAs respectively.
Toshiba has not indicated whether it is introducing particular products from BaySand's portfolio under its own name or whether it has used its license to create original structured arrays or intends to do that in the future.
Baysand Claims that they can deliver Metal Programmable Gate Arrays at the same density, lower power and same cost as ASIC. In addition for logic changes their turn around time is 1-3 months and cost of initial design is way less than FPGA. I personally believe they would be better off as a FPGA replacement.