ARM and IBM this week announced an agreement between the two companies to extend their collaboration on advanced semiconductor technologies. The resulting technology will provide a suite of optimized physical and processor IP by ARM tuned to IBM’s advance manufacturing process down to 14nm. Eventually this will allow smaller developers of ARM-based solutions to quickly utilize leading-edge manufacturing technologies.
Through this agreement ARM and IBM will collaboratively develop design platforms aligning the manufacturing process, microprocessor and physical IP design teams. This collaboration will minimize the risk and barriers to migrating to smaller geometries while enabling optimized density, performance, power and yield in advanced SoC designs; accelerating the introduction of advanced electronics into the marketplace.
Past collaboration with IBM and ARM on advanced geometries have been underway since 2008, resulting in the implementation of extensive process and physical IP refinements to improve SoC density, routability, manufacturability, power consumption, and performance. Moreover, through the previous collaboration on the 32nm and 28nm ARM has already delivered eleven test chips that provide concrete research structures and early silicon validation. In addition, ARM has developed specific optimizations targeting ARM processor cores including most recently a complete ARM Cortex-A9 processor core implemented on 32nm high-K metal gate technology.
The new agreement reinforces the aligned co-development of semiconductor process, foundation Physical IP building blocks, and microprocessor core optimization necessary to achieve market-leading system-on-chip (SoC) solutions for nodes ranging from 20nm through 14nm.
“IBM has a proven track record of delivering the core research and development that is relied upon by major semiconductor vendors worldwide for their advanced semiconductor devices. This agreement will ensure we are able to deliver highly tuned ARM Artisan Physical IP solutions on advanced ISDA process technologies to meet the early time-to-market our customers demand,” said Simon Segars, executive vice president and general manager of ARM physical IP division.