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Cadence adds DFM tools to Encounter

Posted: 11 Jun 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:synthesis tool? encounter gps? lithocruiser?

Cadence Design Systems Inc. said it has signed a multi-year business agreement with ASML MaskTools to co-develop design-for-manufacturing tools.

Cadence executives also unveiled its next generation physical synthesis tool, Encounter GPS.

The multiyear, multimillion dollar software licensing and joint development agreement with ASML MaskTools calls for Cadence to license and co-develop two ASML MaskTools software packages: the MaskWeaver, full chip Rhetical enhancement technology (RET) and OPC tool; and the LithoCruiser, a lithography process analysis and optimization technology.

Lavi Lev, Cadence EVP and GM, told analysts here for the Design Automation Conference that the ASML technology will allow Encounter and Virtuoso platform users to reduce line-width variations and other distortions caused during the photomask process. MaskWeaver applies optical proximity correction to photomasks to ensure the integrity of traces and other structures on IC designs.

LithoCruiser is a silicon simulation engine that allows designers to predict the print quality of their designs before manufacturing. The engine brings a new technology to the Virtuoso platform, while the MaskWeaver fills a hole in Cadence's Virtuoso tool created when Numerical Technologies, now owned by Synopsys, severed its licensing agreement with Cadence in 2002.

Lev also announced that Cadence's futuristic 45 routing technology, X Architecture, is inching closer to production with partners Toshiba making the first commercially available SoC built with the architecture.

The TC90400XBG is a digital-media and home entertainment SoC fabricated in 130nm process.

Though not discussed in the breakfast presentation, Cadence also announced here that its Encounter Platform now interoperates with PDF Solutions Inc.'s pDfx process-aware yield enhancement technology. The interoperability will allow Encounter users to access pDfx technology to get estimates on design yields. The pDfx is used to implement design changes.

Magma Design Automation Inc. announced last week that it integrated pDfx technology into its Blast Fusion tool.

- Mike Santarini

EE Times

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