FPGA has 3.9billion transistors, most ever on an integrated circuit

1 min read

Altera has set an industry record for the most transistors ever packed onto an integrated circuit – 3.9billion in total. According to the programmable logic specialist, its 28nm Stratix V fpgas are the semiconductor industry's first devices to feature this many transistors, delivering what it describes as 'unparalleled performance' to system designers.

"Altera surpassed the known record for transistors when it taped out Stratix V fpgas at the end of 2010," said Bradley Howe, vice president of IC engineering at Altera. "Maintaining the rapid pace set by Moore's Law has allowed programmable logic to remain at the forefront of driving innovations in semiconductor technology. Achieving milestones like this continue to propel fpgas to new heights of capacity and performance while delivering significantly higher levels of integration."

The Stratix V fpgas are the only devices to leverage TSMC's 28nm high performance (28HP) process, combined with optimisations made in the fpga design. This, says Altera, enables it to dramatically increase the capabilities of its high end device family.

By incorporating features such as 28Gb/s transceivers, variable precision dsp blocks and embedded HardCopy blocks, the company says the fpgas can be leveraged in the highest performance, highest bandwidth applications. These include 100G optical transport network multiplexing transponders, 100GbE line cards and advanced military radar applications.