Processor Control

DQI Bureau
New Update

Silicon technology is believed to continue its relentless evolution under

Moore's Law, and chips holding over 100 mn gates will be achievable with 65 nm

technology in the near future. Meanwhile, new nanostructures or nanodevices in

the scale of 0.1-10 nm are under intensive development. New challenges and

opportunities lie in frontiers like nanoelectronic processor and computer

systems design and CAD for nanoelectronic systems.


In 2005, the semi conductor industry will hold steady. Cellphone shipments

have slowed to 8%, but with 3 megapixel cameras coming, the cellphone is going

to become the consumer's number one digital camcorder, and all kinds of

video-chats will be possible. It might even become your digital TV. We will

continue to see double digit growth in India and China, the world's

fastest-growing, emerging markets.

CHIP TRIP: A 300 mm wafer post-production at a chip fabrication plant

During the 1980s we saw the beginning of client-server, the PC and the

Ethernet, which brought PCT into the enterprise. The 1990's became the era of

the PC and the cellphone. Microsoft Windows and 32-bit microprocessors became

the industry standards for computing. The development of low-cost modems, made

possible by advances in DSP technology, led to the Internet boom. We reached

another important milestone with the introduction of high quality, 3-dimensional

graphics and texture-mapping technology.


Chips of the new block

In any semiconductor industry there are two important aspects of the product

development: VLSI Design and Wafer Technology.

VLSI design: Chip architecture plays a significant role in performance. The

world has migrated from 8 bit architecture to 16 bit, then 32 bit and now to 64

bit architecture for X86 CPU. AMD has launched 64 bit technology for servers,

desktops and laptops.

SMP and MPP Processing

Taking off from dual-core processing, an SMP architecture has CPUs assigned

to the next available task or thread that can run concurrently. SMP is a

multiprocessing architecture in which multiple CPUs, residing in one cabinet,

share the same memory. SMP systems provide scalability. As business increases,

additional CPUs can be added to absorb the increased transaction volume. And, in

an MPP (Massively Parallel Processing or Massively Parallel Processor)

operation, where thousands of processors can be used, the problem is broken up

into separate pieces, which are processed simultaneously.


Wafer Technology: This is another important aspect of the semiconductor

industry. Today, wafers for AMD microprocessors are produced at the Fab 30

facility in Dresden, Germany. AMD is on track to deliver 90-nm dual-core

products to add performance while limiting power consumption in the second half

of this year. With the introduction of copper at the 180-nm node, we are on

target to deliver low-k dielectrics, SOI and first-generation strained silicon

at 130 nm; and soon, second-generation strained silicon at 90 nm. The current 90

nm transistor generation features Lgate of 50 nm, SOI and a triple spacer.

As customer-centric innovation grows, so will the right technology.

Editorial Advisors -Anirudh Mathuria, Country Head, Sinett

Semiconductor India, and Sanjeev Keskar, Country Manager, AMD Far East