Mixed Signal ASIC Design Flow

Custom IC Design – Providing technical and commercial advantages

Swindon’s enhanced analogue, digital and mixed-signal custom integrated circuits, designed to our customer’s demanding requirement provides an end product with a distinct and unique technical and commercial advantage.

Swindon’s full turnkey service (FTK) starts from initial specifications through to the supply of volume tested and calibrated ASICs including analogue and mixed signal design, test, packaging, component production, logistics and supply chain management. Swindon also provides full evaluation, characterisation, industrial and automotive qualification (AEC Q100) and full failure analysis in accordance with defined industry standards such as TS 16949.

This FTK service enables our customers to be able to focus on their core competencies whilst Swindon designs, manufactures, tests and supplies their custom ASIC solution to anywhere in the world.

ASIC Design Flow – How Swindon develops and delivers an ASIC project

The Swindon team consists of Consultant, Design and Layout engineers working together in a structured planned process to deliver the optimum outcome for our customers. We start by agreeing the system specification, then on to an early design simulation, through layouts and prototype evaluation and onto full production testing.

 

ASIC Design and Supply Process Flow

Agree System Specification

Customer Application Review

  • Review customer system requirements / specifications
  • Establish ASIC requirements
  • Produce Technical Report (if required) which includes, target die size, fabrication process, packaging requirements, test requirements

ASIC Fixed Price Quotation

  • Non-Recurring Engineering (NRE)
  • Production unit price
  • Development, prototype and production schedule
  • Milestones and deliverables

Agree System Specification

Customer Application Review

  • Review customer system requirements / specifications
  • Establish ASIC requirements
  • Produce Technical Report (if required) which includes, target die size, fabrication process, packaging requirements, test requirements

ASIC Fixed Price Quotation

  • Non-Recurring Engineering (NRE)
  • Production unit price
  • Development, prototype and production schedule
  • Milestones and deliverables

Project Start/Preliminary ASIC Review

Project Start/Preliminary ASIC Review

  • Review System Specification
  • Commence ASIC Specification
  • Review all schedules and project plan

ASIC Fixed Price Quotation

  • Non-Recurring Engineering (NRE)
  • Production unit price
  • Development, prototype and production schedule
  • Milestones and deliverables

Project Start/Preliminary ASIC Review

Project Start/Preliminary ASIC Review

  • Review System Specification
  • Commence ASIC Specification
  • Review all schedules and project plan

ASIC Fixed Price Quotation

  • Non-Recurring Engineering (NRE)
  • Production unit price
  • Development, prototype and production schedule
  • Milestones and deliverables

Initial Design and Layout

Initial Design & Layout

  • Top level design
  • Device partitioning
  • Analog circuit design
  • Digital circuit design
  • Customer / foundry IP
  • ASIC Floor Plan
  • Built-In test features
  • Complete ASIC specification

Initial Design and Layout

Initial Design & Layout

  • Top level design
  • Device partitioning
  • Analog circuit design
  • Digital circuit design
  • Customer / foundry IP
  • ASIC Floor Plan
  • Built-In test features
  • Complete ASIC specification

Design Review/Simulation and Check

Design Review

  • Review circuit performance
  • Review physical layout status
  • Design and layout revisions (if required)

Simulation and Checks

  • Simulate over temperature and voltage
  • Complete Design Rule Checks (DRC’s)
  • Complete Layout Vs. Schematic (LVS)
  • Prepare test plans and specification

Design Review/Simulation and Check

Design Review

  • Review circuit performance
  • Review physical layout status
  • Design and layout revisions (if required)

Simulation and Checks

  • Simulate over temperature and voltage
  • Complete Design Rule Checks (DRC’s)
  • Complete Layout Vs. Schematic (LVS)
  • Prepare test plans and specification

Prototype Fabrication/Test Program Development

Prototype Fabrication

  • Multi Layer Mask (MLM) production
  • Engineering wafers fabrication
  • Package devices

Test Program Development

  • Prototype test program and hardware
  • Production test program and hardware

Prototype Fabrication/Test Program Development

Prototype Fabrication

  • Multi Layer Mask (MLM) production
  • Engineering wafers fabrication
  • Package devices

Test Program Development

  • Prototype test program and hardware
  • Production test program and hardware

Prototype Evaluation

Prototype Evaluation

  • Wafer probe (if required)
  • Package devices
  • Customer evaluates packaged prototypes
  • Design and layout revisions (if required)

Prototype Evaluation

Prototype Evaluation

  • Wafer probe (if required)
  • Package devices
  • Customer evaluates packaged prototypes
  • Design and layout revisions (if required)

Prototype Acceptance Review

Prototype Acceptance Review

  • ASIC performance versus specification
  • Reliability Testing Review
  • Yield Analysis Review
  • Proceed to Production

Prototype Acceptance Review

Prototype Acceptance Review

  • ASIC performance versus specification
  • Reliability Testing Review
  • Yield Analysis Review
  • Proceed to Production

Production

Production

  • ASIC qualification
  • ASIC production release
  • Production tape out
  • Supply 100% fully tested devices

Production

Production

  • ASIC qualification
  • ASIC production release
  • Production tape out
  • Supply 100% fully tested devices

Analogue IC Design

Analogue design is one of Swindon’s primary areas of expertise. Over the years we have developed many analog IP blocks which can be used across many applications. Our proven analogue design covers many areas such as Analogue to Digital Convertors (ADC), Digital to Analogue Convertors (DAC), Amplifiers (OP Amps, TIA, LNA, VGA etc), Synthesizers, Voltage Regulators and Convertors (many different architectures), Voltage Controlled Oscillators (VCO’s), Constant Current Generator, Filters and Signal Conditioning to name but a few.

Swindon has designed and integrated many complex ASICs across numerous geometries.

Digital IC Design

Integrating a DSP or advanced processor onto your ASIC is common place today. Swindon has designs with anything from a simple state machine, an 8 bit 8051 microcontroller, a custom processing block to an ARM Cortex processor. We work with our customers to assess and then deliver the optimum architect for your application. This often means using a custom block for the signal processing as in many cases the full capabilities of a standard processor are not required and can be wasted resource in the design.

Swindon will optimise your design for performance and size enabling you to gain the competitive advantage for your market.

ASIC IP 

Swindon operates in many different applications providing custom and optimised solutions through our ASICs. We design, develop and produce the most sophisticated digital, analogue and mixed signal design blocks which are used to create advanced market leading products. We also have extensive access to our foundry partners’ digital IP library, such as RAM / Flash memory blocks that can be incorporated into the design.

By applying these existing IP blocks to your design ensures shorter design cycles and projects that are on time and in budget. For example, the diagram below illustrates the breadth of our proven design blocks and our ADC designs ranging from 8 bit to 24bit resolution and up to 5Gs/s sampling rate.

Sensor Interface Design Examples

The intelligent sensor is being utilised in many existing and emerging applications and the dynamic development of ASIC solutions is driving the future for us all.
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