HSIN-CHU, Taiwan-October 23, 2000 - Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (NYSE: TSM), the world's leading semiconductor foundry, today announced its new Five Star Intellectual Property (IP) Alliance Program for pre-qualifying IP. TSMC created the program to help IC designers gain easy and early access to production-proven third-party IP from its portfolio of industry-leading IP providers for complex system-on-chip (SOC) designs.
The Five Star IP Alliance Program awards One Star, Three Star and Five Star ratings for IP on each TSMC process technology, from legacy 0.5-micron processes through to our advanced 0.13-micron offerings. TSMC awards a One Star rating to the design of an IP architecture that has been completed based on simulation results. These are process independent cores that have not seen silicon. The prospective IP will graduate to a Three Star rating when it's functionality has been successfully verified in a specific TSMC process. Selected IP partners receive a free test chip in TSMC's CyberShuttleTM test chip program to harden cores. A Five Star rating is awarded only to IP that has been successfully production-proven in at least one customer design in a specific TSMC process.
Over 40 IP partners have achieved Three Star ratings for their IP, and almost half of these have production-proven IP in a TSMC's customer product, thereby earning the Five Star rating. TSMC works with IP partners who are industry-acknowledged leaders with a proven track record, and who approach the market with innovative pioneering technology.
Today's complex SOC designs present serious challenges for designers. A first challenge is to select and integrate an IP block that provides appropriate functionality. A second challenge is to port the functional IP block into the target process. The program's portfolio of market-leading third-party IP providers offers designers a greater degree of assurance in both aspects.
"The ever-increasing complexity of SOC designs has put tremendous stress on the design engineering community," said Peyman Kazemkhani, IP Alliance program director at TSMC. "Designers have a keen interest in using working IP that will increase the chance for first-design success. TSMC's Five Star IP Alliance Program gives our customers newfound peace-of-mind by providing production-proven, ready-to-use IP blocks."
SOC designs require a wide array of high performance cores, and TSMC's Five Star IP Alliance Program offers a wide range of IP offerings. These include embedded processors, digital signal processing (DSP), communications and networking, bus interface, mixed signal, Radio Frequency (RF), multimedia, embedded configurable logic, and special memory. A catalog of IP is available on TSMC's web site.
TSMC is the world's largest dedicated semiconductor foundry, providing the industry's leading process technology, library and IP options and other leading-edge foundry services. TSMC operates seven eight-inch wafer fabs (Fab 3, 4, 5, 6, TASMC, WSMC and WaferTech), and two six-inch wafer fabs (Fabs 1 and 2). In addition, the company has begun construction of a $1.2 billion joint venture fab with Philips Semiconductor, which is scheduled to open in Singapore in 2000. TSMC recently broke ground for its first 12-inch fabs, Fab 7 in Tainan and Fab 12 in Hsin-Chu. In 2000, TSMC expects to have the capacity for nearly 3.4 million 8-inch equivalent wafers. Fabrication processes offered by TSMC include CMOS logic, mixed-mode, volatile and non-volatile memory, and BiCMOS. TSMC's corporate headquarters are in Hsin-Chu, Taiwan. More information about TSMC is available through the World Wide Web at http://www.tsmc.com.