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Synopsys ventures on analog/mixed-signal tools

Posted: 25 Sep 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:analog/mixed signal? design tool? EDA market?

Synopsys Inc. has officially embarked on the realm of analog/mixed-signal design tools with the launching of Galaxy Custom Designer.

The company said Galaxy Custom Designer is the first implementation tool built primarily on the OpenAccess database for legacy designs as well as a new componentized infrastructure designed to support interoperability with foundry process design kits (PDKs).

It added that the design tool leverages the company's Galaxy Design Platform to give a unified solution for custom and digital designs. The tool offers a commonly used model for simulation, analysis, parasitic extraction and physical verification, according to the company.

Synopsys showcased Galaxy Custom Designer, formerly known as Orion, at the Design Automation Conference in June and at the company's San Jose users' group event in March.

The ongoing rivalry
The official Synopsys entry into the analog mixed-signal tool market is made available a few weeks after rival Magma Design Automation Inc. released its Titan analog/mixed-signal design tool. Both vendors are heading to wrestle away a piece of a market long dominated by EDA market leader Cadence Design Systems Inc. The analog/mixed-signal EDA market is worth an estimated $400 million per year, according to Gary Smith EDA.

"Our customers have long been requesting a modern option to the custom design solutions available in the market," said Aart de Geus, chairman and CEO, Synopsys.

De Geus added that what the company seeks to do for its customers is the same with what was made with digital implementation by using open architecture tightly partnered with the company's Galaxy Design Platform and analog mixed-signal verification and IP products.

Compatible connection
Synopsys said the Galaxy Custom Designer has complete data transparency with Synopsys' IC Compiler physical implementation solution, enabling the exchange of information during floorplanning, placement, routing and final chip editing to reduce design iterations.

The company added that the design tool was architected from the ground up to stress productivity, with key modules such as schematic editor featuring on-canvas editing and dynamic net highlighting. "The simulation environment has a commonly used model giving access to Synopsys simulators, while the layout editor features a real-time preview of p-cell parameter changes," it noted. "Results from Synopsys' Hercules DRC/LVS and Star-RCXT parasitic extraction tools are dynamically available within Galaxy Custom Designer," Synopsys said.

Fu-Chieh Hsu, VP, design and technology platform, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd, said the foundry is partnering with Synopsys on the industry's first interoperable PDK for the 65nm node with a single PDK that supports multiple environments, along with the latest innovations such as Custom Designer.

- Dylan McGrath
EE Times

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