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Posted: Mar 12, 2013
IC Design Consultancy Sondrel Completes 3rd Successful 28nm Tape Out This Year
(Nanowerk News) Sondrel, one of the world’s leading system-to-silicon IC design consultancies, has just completed its third 28nm design this year - for a leading communications company – and is closing on two more at this node. Although Sondrel has worked on over 200 IC designs at all nodes down to 20nm, and chip sizes over 700mm², the fact that the company has so many successful tape-outs at 28nm convinces CEO Graham Curren that 28nm will be the preferred geometry for complex chips for some time to come.
He explains: “As an independent design consultancy we have customers in all sectors – mobile, computing, graphics, consumer, automotive – so it is interesting that so many of our projects are based around 28nm. We think this is perhaps because 28nm appears to be a strong, stable process with good yield and performance characteristics, and is therefore more attractive than 40nm or the still new 20nm node. Our holistic approach – where we consider manufacturability from the outset rather than as a separate activity later – pays dividends at all nodes, especially at 28nm and below, where there are a lot of new DFM requirements, and where you simply can’t afford to ignore production issues early on.”
Sondrel is a TSMC Design Centre Alliance (DCA) partner and the leading IC foundry’s recent earning release supports Sondrel’s 28 nanometer viewpoint, announcing that “shipments of 28 nanometer process technology reached 22% of total wafer revenues”. Sondrel is also approved by SMIC – the consultancy is one of a very few such companies to be approved by both SMIC and TSMC – and has strong relationships with EDA tools vendors, IP suppliers and other foundries, resulting in a very strong design supply chain.