Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors
Heifer International



Home > Press > Powering the future: Smallest all-digital circuit opens doors to 5 nm next-gen semiconductor

Figure 1. Photograph of a chip containing the proposed PLL
The entire all-digital PLL fits in a 50 × 72 μm2

region, making it the smallest PLL to date.
Figure 1. Photograph of a chip containing the proposed PLL The entire all-digital PLL fits in a 50 × 72 μm2 region, making it the smallest PLL to date.

Abstract:
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Socionext Inc. have designed the world’s smallest all-digital phase-locked loop (PLL). PLLs are critical clocking circuits in virtually all digital applications, and reducing their size and improving their performance is a necessary step to enabling the development of next-generation technologies.

Powering the future: Smallest all-digital circuit opens doors to 5 nm next-gen semiconductor

Tokyo and Yokohama, Japan | Posted on February 11th, 2020

New or improved technologies, such as artificial intelligence, 5G cellular communications, and the Internet-of-Things, are expected to bring revolutionary changes in society. But for that to happen, high-performance system-on-a-chip (SoC)—a type of integrated circuit—devices are indispensable. A core building block of SoC devices is the phase-locked loop (PLL), a circuit that synchronizes with the frequency of a reference oscillation and outputs a signal with the same or higher frequency. PLLs generate ‘clocking signals’, whose oscillations act as a metronome that provides a precise timing reference for the harmonious operation of digital devices.

For high performance SoC devices to be realized, fabrication processes for semiconductor electronics must become more sophisticated. The smaller the area to implement digital circuitry is, the better the performance of the device. Manufacturers have been racing to develop increasingly smaller semiconductors. 7 nm semiconductors (a massive improvement over their 10 nm predecessor) are already in production, and methods to build 5 nm ones are now being looked at.

However, in this endeavor stands a major bottleneck. Existing PLLs require analog components, which are generally bulky and have designs that are difficult to scale down.

Scientists at Tokyo Tech and Socionext Inc., led by Prof. Kenichi Okada, have addressed this issue by implementing a ‘synthesizable’ fractional-N PLL, which only requires digital logic gates, and no bulky analog components, making it easy to adopt in conventional miniaturized integrated circuits.

Okada and team used several techniques to decrease the required area, power consumption and jitter—unwanted time fluctuations when transmitting digital signals—of their synthesizable PLLs. To decrease area, they employed a ring oscillator, a compact oscillator that can be easily scaled down. To suppress jitter, they reduced the phase noise—random fluctuations in a signal—of this ring oscillator, using ‘injection locking’—the process of synchronizing an oscillator with an external signal whose frequency (or multiple of it) is close to that of the oscillator—over a wide range of frequencies. The lower phase noise, in turn, reduced power consumption.

The design of this synthesizable PLL beats that of all other current state-of-the-art PLLs in many important aspects. It achieves the best jitter performance with the lowest power consumption and smallest area (as can be seen in Figure 1). “The core area is 0.0036 mm2, and the whole PLL is implemented as one layout with a single power supply,” remarks Okada. Further, it can be built using standard digital design tools, allowing for its rapid, low-effort, and low-cost production, making it commercially viable.

This synthesizable PLL can be easily integrated into the design of all-digital SoCs, and is commercially viable, making it valuable for developing the much sought after 5 nm semiconductor for cutting-edge applications including artificial intelligence, internet of things and many others, where high performance and low power consumption would be the critical requirements. But the contributions of this research go beyond these possibilities. “Our work demonstrates the potential of synthesizable circuits. With the design methodology employed here, other building blocks of SoCs, such as data converters, power management circuits, and wireless transceivers, could be made synthesizable as well. This would greatly boost design productivity and considerably reduce design efforts,” explains Okada. Tokyo Tech and Socionext will continue their collaboration in this filed to advance the miniaturization of electronic devices, enabling the realization of newer-generation technologies.

This research work was conducted in cooperation with TeraPixel Technologies Inc.


Affiliations:
[1] Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan [
[2] Socionext Inc., Yokohama, Japan

*Corresponding author’s email:

####

About Tokyo Institute of Technology
Tokyo Tech stands at the forefront of research and higher education as the leading university for science and technology in Japan. Tokyo Tech researchers excel in fields ranging from materials science to biology, computer science, and physics. Founded in 1881, Tokyo Tech hosts over 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students per year, who develop into scientific leaders and some of the most sought-after engineers in industry. Embodying the Japanese philosophy of “monotsukuri,” meaning “technical ingenuity and innovation,” the Tokyo Tech community strives to contribute to society through high-impact research.
www.titech.ac.jp/english/


About Socionext
Socionext is a global, innovative enterprise that designs, develops and delivers System-on-Chip solutions to customers worldwide. The company is focused on technologies that drive today’s leading-edge applications in consumer, automotive and industrial markets. Socionext combines world-class expertise, experience, and an extensive IP portfolio to provide exceptional solutions and ensure a better quality of experience for customers. Founded in 2015, Socionext Inc. is headquartered in Yokohama, and has offices in Japan, Asia, United States and Europe to lead its product development and sales activities. For more information, visit www.socionext.com.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Emiko Kawaguchi
Public Relations Section,
Tokyo Institute of Technology

+81-3-5734-2975

Corporate Planning Office
Socionext Inc.
http://www.socionext.com/en/contact
+81-45-568-1006

Copyright © Tokyo Institute of Technology

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

Reference

Related News Press

News and information

Drawing data in nanometer scale September 30th, 2022

Researchers unveil mystery inside Li- o2 batteries September 30th, 2022

Synthesis of air-stable room-temperature van der Waals magnetic thin flakes September 30th, 2022

ACM Research Launches New Furnace Tool for Thermal Atomic Layer Deposition to Support Advanced Semiconductor Manufacturing Requirements: Ultra Fn A Furnace Tool Shipped to China-Based Foundry Customer September 30th, 2022

Exquisitely thin membranes can slash energy spent refining crude oil into fuel and plastic: Queen Mary scientists have created a new type of nanomembrane that presents a less energy intensive way to fractionate hydrocarbons from crude oil September 30th, 2022

Wireless/telecommunications/RF/Antennas/Microwaves

Synthesis of air-stable room-temperature van der Waals magnetic thin flakes September 30th, 2022

Quantum network nodes with warm atoms June 24th, 2022

Photonic integrated erbium doped amplifiers reach commercial performance: Boosting light power revolutionizes communications and autopilots June 17th, 2022

Nanoscale bowtie antenna under optical and electrical excitations June 3rd, 2022

Internet-of-Things

New chip ramps up AI computing efficiency August 19th, 2022

Hardware

A Carbon Nanotube Microprocessor Mature Enough to Say Hello: Three new breakthroughs make commercial nanotube processors possible March 2nd, 2020

SUNY Poly Professor Partners with Leading Institutions on NSF Award for Quantum Information Science Research: SUNY Poly Research Builds Upon Recent Quantum-related Research Initiatives and Workshops January 27th, 2020

Do you Kyoto? World-leading companies share their approaches to environmentally friendly business at NAUM’19 October 14th, 2019

Future of portable electronics -- Novel organic semiconductor with exciting properties: Researchers synthesize a new substance that can potentially be adapted to form a semiconductor with wide applications in electronics September 13th, 2019

Possible Futures

Researchers unveil mystery inside Li- o2 batteries September 30th, 2022

Synthesis of air-stable room-temperature van der Waals magnetic thin flakes September 30th, 2022

Layer Hall effect and hidden Berry curvature in antiferromagnetic insulators September 30th, 2022

ACM Research Launches New Furnace Tool for Thermal Atomic Layer Deposition to Support Advanced Semiconductor Manufacturing Requirements: Ultra Fn A Furnace Tool Shipped to China-Based Foundry Customer September 30th, 2022

Chip Technology

Conformal optical black hole for cavity September 30th, 2022

Synthesis of air-stable room-temperature van der Waals magnetic thin flakes September 30th, 2022

ACM Research Launches New Furnace Tool for Thermal Atomic Layer Deposition to Support Advanced Semiconductor Manufacturing Requirements: Ultra Fn A Furnace Tool Shipped to China-Based Foundry Customer September 30th, 2022

Key element for a scalable quantum computer: Physicists from Forschungszentrum Jülich and RWTH Aachen University demonstrate electron transport on a quantum chip September 23rd, 2022

Nanoelectronics

Key element for a scalable quantum computer: Physicists from Forschungszentrum Jülich and RWTH Aachen University demonstrate electron transport on a quantum chip September 23rd, 2022

Reduced power consumption in semiconductor devices September 23rd, 2022

Atomic level deposition to extend Moore’s law and beyond July 15th, 2022

Controlled synthesis of crystal flakes paves path for advanced future electronics June 17th, 2022

Discoveries

Surface microstructures of lunar soil returned by Chang’e-5 mission reveal an intermediate stage in space weathering process September 30th, 2022

Researchers unveil mystery inside Li- o2 batteries September 30th, 2022

Synthesis of air-stable room-temperature van der Waals magnetic thin flakes September 30th, 2022

Layer Hall effect and hidden Berry curvature in antiferromagnetic insulators September 30th, 2022

Announcements

Researchers unveil mystery inside Li- o2 batteries September 30th, 2022

Synthesis of air-stable room-temperature van der Waals magnetic thin flakes September 30th, 2022

Layer Hall effect and hidden Berry curvature in antiferromagnetic insulators September 30th, 2022

ACM Research Launches New Furnace Tool for Thermal Atomic Layer Deposition to Support Advanced Semiconductor Manufacturing Requirements: Ultra Fn A Furnace Tool Shipped to China-Based Foundry Customer September 30th, 2022

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers/Posters

Conformal optical black hole for cavity September 30th, 2022

Cleveland researchers reveal new strategy to prevent blood clots without increasing the risk of bleeding: University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve University findings may be especially impactful for cancer patients who experience blood clot complications September 30th, 2022

Ultrasmall VN/Co heterostructure with optimized N active sites anchored in N-doped graphitic nanocarbons for boosting hydrogen evolution September 30th, 2022

Layer Hall effect and hidden Berry curvature in antiferromagnetic insulators September 30th, 2022

Artificial Intelligence

New chip ramps up AI computing efficiency August 19th, 2022

Artificial Intelligence Centered Cancer Nanomedicine: Diagnostics, Therapeutics and Bioethics June 3rd, 2022

‘Nanomagnetic’ computing can provide low-energy AI, researchers show May 6th, 2022

Development of low-power and high-efficiency artificial sensory neurons: 3T-OTS device to simulate the efficient information processing method of the human brain. A green light for the development of sensor-AI combined next-generation artificial intelligence “to be used in life a April 8th, 2022

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project