Impinj and TSMC Qualify AEON™ Memory
June 20, 2005 - Seattle, WA
Impinj, Inc., the fabless semiconductor company whose patented Self-Adaptive Silicon® technology enables its semiconductor intellectual property (IP) business, has completed qualification of its AEON Memory, a portfolio of embedded non-volatile memory (NVM) cores, at leading semiconductor foundry, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Ltd. (TSMC) (TAIEX: 2330, NYSE: TSM.)
The world's first multiple-time-programmable (MTP) NVM cores manufactured in standard logic CMOS processes, Impinj's AEON Memory is designed to replace older E² memory technology and has been adopted by a number of leading semiconductor companies including National Semiconductor, Primarion, ZMD, Spatialight, Toppan, and Dragonchip. The qualified AEON Memory product line consists of hard macro cell cores in 64bits to 16kbits configurations. Of particular interest to analog and mixed signal designers who require small but crucial amounts of embedded NVM in leading-edge chip designs, Impinj's AEON Memory facilitates the storage of configuration, address, data, trim, and encryption key information vital to a wide range of consumer, industrial, and communications electronics products and markets.
"Impinj's AEON Memory portfolio is an important extension to our 0.25µm CMOS process and extends the capability of what designers can do with our main stream standard logic process," said Chun-Mai Liu, Director of Derivative Technology Marketing at TSMC. "Achievement of the qualification milestone with no additional masking steps or process alterations allows TSMC to broadly support the technology."
"As one of Impinj's lead customers for the AEON Memory technology, we went through extensive qualification testing prior to releasing our RF product into high volume production," said Matt Penry, Product Line Director for National Semiconductor. "The AEON Memory NVM technology has worked as advertised and provided us with a reliable solution for limited size embedded E² memory needs at small process geometries."
Available in 0.18µm and 0.25µm TSMC CMOS processes, Impinj's AEON Memory is also in mass production at leading mixed signal integrated circuit provider, Primarion. "Primarion's high reliability power management solutions required the right combination of low power, efficient silicon area, and high reliability," said Ken Ostrom, vice president of engineering at Primarion. "After thorough internal qualification testing, we concluded that Impinj's AEON Memory was the best solution."
Impinj's AEON Memory is optimized for small bit-count embedded applications, including on-chip analog trim, product calibration, customer-specific configuration, and encryption key storage. The diverse applications for AEON Memory include: LCD drivers (for storing analog calibration data), RF devices such as chips for wireless LAN, RF headsets and RF speakers (for storing system address and identification information) and dedicated-function microcontrollers (for storage of program code) all of which ship over one billion units per year. In an independent survey of 47 companies conducted by a leading market research firm 73% of respondents require NVM in their next design, 71% use densities below 16 kilobits and an overwhelming 95% must have an MTP solution because one-time programmable (OTP) memories lack the necessary flexibility.
Technical Data and Availability
Available immediately, AEON Memory hard IP blocks are silicon-proven and fully qualified in TSMC's 0.25 µm 2.5v/3.3v logic CMOS processes. The qualification process included tests for endurance, data retention storage life and high temperature operating life. Impinj provides AEON Memory customers with physical layout files, simulation models, timing information, and all technical documentation necessary for successful incorporation of AEON Memory blocks into chip designs. Users can select from over 160 configurations providing control over memory size, word width and page sizes. All configurations operate over a temperature range from 0 °C to 85 °C. A qualification report is available through Impinj or TSMC.
Impinj, Inc. (NASDAQ: PI) wirelessly connects billions of everyday items such as apparel, medical supplies, automobile parts, luggage and food to consumer and business applications such as inventory management, patient safety, asset tracking and item authentication. The Impinj platform uses RAIN RFID to deliver timely information about these items to the digital world, thereby enabling the Internet of Things.
Senior Director, Marketing Communications