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Machine learning capabilities added to DFM signoff for FinFET solutions

Globalfoundries (GF), the specialty foundry, and Cadence Design Systems are working together to support design for manufacturing (DFM) signoff with machine learning (ML) prediction capabilities.

As part of the collaboration, the Cadence Litho Physical Analyzer, a DFM pattern analysis tool integrated with GF-developed ML models, has been qualified for GF’s 12LP and 12LP+ solutions.

The Cadence Litho Physical Analyzer provides customers with in-design automated DFM hotspot detection and fixing capabilities to speed up implementation and time to market. The ML-based enhancement delivers up to 33% greater detection efficiency when compared to traditional pattern-matching checks but with a less than 10% runtime impact.

GF has released a corresponding ML-enhanced DFM kit as an update to its 12LP process design kits (PDKs), with the 12LP+ version scheduled for release in the second quarter of 2021, providing customers with faster design and production of chips that are optimised for artificial intelligence (AI), data centre, internet of things (IoT) and other markets.

GF’s 12LP+ solution is optimised for AI training and inference applications and builds upon GF’s established 14nm/12LP platform, of which GF has shipped more than one million wafers. Both 12LP and 12LP+ deliver a combination of AI power, performance and area (PPA) benefits without the need to migrate to smaller and much costlier geometries.

“By incorporating ML capabilities into the Cadence Litho Physical Analyzer, customers using GF’s 12LP platform and 12LP+ solution can verify signoff quality during implementation, thereby achieving better silicon quality,” said Jim Blatchford, vice president of technology enablement at GLOBALFOUNDRIES. “Our collaboration with Cadence also allowed the swift enablement and seamless integration with our customers’ design flows through the delivery of this new capability in our 12LP and 12LP+ PDKs.”

The Cadence Litho Physical Analyzer can be integrated with the Cadence Innovus Implementation System and Cadence Virtuoso custom IC design platform, providing customers with a common interface.

Commenting Michael Jackson, corporate vice president, R&D in the Digital & Signoff Group at Cadence said,“Through our latest collaboration with GF, customers can leverage our tools with the added boost of ML capabilities to achieve design success using GF’s 12LP/12LP+ solutions. Furthermore, our Litho Physical Analyzer with ML capabilities enhances GF’s DRC+ capabilities and improves yield based on the tool’s ability to effectively catch more hotspots and repair previously undetected hotspot patterns.”

Neil Tyler

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