When we do sensitivity analysis, we can do linear or non-linear. It is linear if I increase or decrease by 5% and the sensitivity is the same. In a lot of cases it is different. Right now we can do multiple points, typically at least 2 points, and run some simulation to determine if it is linear or non-linear. The formats right now are still supporting only linear, so there is work to be done in the formats to support the full blown non-linear sensitivity. That is coming. We have seen some proposals for that.
it was important to establish a base with our Liberate product that shows that
we can do all the regular non-SSTA characterization. Because our belief is in SSTA, if you say
variation equals zero, you should get the same results as SSTA. If you do not have the same library characterization
system with the same assumptions and same mindset, it is very difficult to
ensure that consistency. We support
multiple vendors right now. You will see
people with mixed flows where one vendor’s tool will be used for signoff and
another vendor’s for implementation.
That situation has been quite common in the past. I think it will happen with SSTA. Again our ability to do random variation very
quickly remains the main distinguishing factor of our tool. People believe that
random variation will become a larger component of the total variation as
people understand more and more how to deal with systematic variation: basically
design it away or remove it from the actual process. People generally accept that there is always
going to be some element of randomness and that random contribution will
probably increase over time. To be able
to model very efficiently is very important.
Who are you going after in terms of market?
We see the market in three different segments. There is obviously the IP and foundries, people who deliver libraries. They are very interested in this stuff. One of our first customers was Virage Logic who use our Liberate product for standard cell characterization. We are also working with IDMs. Renesas was the first customer for our statistical characterization tool. We also see quite a bit of interest in the COT market. If you look at the top 10 COT companies, they all either develop their own libraries or they re-characterize somebody else’s. There are probably good reasons for that. With the volume of business they are doing, it makes sense to reduce margins, to improve quality of the cell whether it is actually on the layout itself or in the model.
What is the pricing and availability?
Variety is available now,
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