LONDON SiliconBlue Technologies Corp. (Sunnyvale, Calif.) is a startup company that is developing a low-power SRAM and non-volatile memory based field programmable gate array (FPGA) architecture aimed particularly at handheld applications. Its two founders have many years experience in programmable logic and with Nokia, respectively.
The company has said it has worked with Kilopass Technology Inc. (Santa Clara, Calif.) to apply memory technology to FPGAs that can be made on standard low-power CMOS by a foundry supplier.
However, the Kilopass XPM technology is a fuse-based one-time programmable memory and SiliconBlue describes its FPGAs as being reprogrammable. This could be achieved by setting aside a portion of one-time programmable memory to hold configuration code and then moving on to a new region of memory for each repurposing of the circuit.
The company's first product range is known as iCE65 and comes in complexities of between 1,792 and 15,260 logic blocks. The FPGAs are rated for current consumption at 32-kHz and 32-MHz indicating an ability to wind down the clock to save power in a handset. The largest size iCE65L16 consumes 250-microamps at 32-kHz and 40 milliamps at 32-MHz. The company is also offering the Taiwanese-made chips in bare die form for system-in-package integration.
Silicon Blue does claim, "A new technology breakthrough, licensed to, and patented by SiliconBlue offers both the lowest power and the lowest cost programmable solution."
Besides combining NVM and SRAM on one-chip, the company's main claim to fame seems to have been to be implementing its ideas in 65-nm CMOS with a road-map to 45-nm while the competition is at 90-nm, thereby producing chip-count and power consumption benefits.