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Intel backs Israel graphics processing startup

Posted: 04 Jan 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:GPU? graphics processing unit? processor? chip? Intel?

Startup company Lucid Information Technology Ltd has raised a $12 million round of funding from Intel Capital, Giza Venture Capital and Genesis Partners. The company raised $4.5 million in its first round in 2005, having started up in August 2003 with $500,000 from Maayan Ventures.

The Israel startup, which employs 27 workers, aims to provide a graphics acceleration traffic organizing chip that can support up to four GPUs simultaneously. Lucid said it expects to have first full production silicon samples by the end of 2007. The company plans to hit volume sales with a large board manufacturer such as Asustek, Leadtek or GigaByte and a system integrator such as Dell, HP or Alienware.

Lucid's chip is mainly targeted at the gaming computer industry. The company estimates that PCs consume at least 60 million GPUs annually, while new games demand more computation than a single GPU can provide. The chip acts like a hub connecting the main processor to the multiple graphics processors, serving as a traffic cop. One part of it is a chip situated between the two units, and the other part is a software driver, that now supports Windows. The chip helps divide the graphics processing work among several GPUs, while the driver helps makes the application indifferent to the graphics processors in use.

- Amir Ben-Artzi
EE Times Europe

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