IBM, European Union team up on chip design

IBM Research said it is to collaborate with universities and other bodies in the European Union to improve productivity and reliability of semiconductor and electronic systems design.

The Diamond consortium is funded by the European Union and aims to create significant savings on chips and cut the design time.

Members of the consortium are IBM Research; Ericsson, Sweden; Tallinna Tehnikaulikool, Estonia; Linkopings Universitet, Sweden; Universitat Bremen, Germany; Technische Universitat Graz, Austria; TransEDA Systems, Hungary and the Testonica Lab, Estonia.

Jaan Raik, senior researcher at Tallina Techikaulikool and coordinator of the Diamond consortium said that designing semiconductors is very expensive and design costs threan to slow down the industry’s growth. “The increasing gap between the complexity of new systems and the productivity of system design methods can only be mitigated by developing new and more competent design methods and tools,” he said.

There are industry estimates that fault localisation and correction for semiconductors will cost $34.5 million per chip this year – Diamond wants to reduce the time by 50 percent and so cut design costs by $17.25 million per chip.

IBM Research estimates that by 2011 there will be three devices for every human being on the planet.