Reference designs to quickly develop complex SoC chips

Date: 13/09/2022
UK-based chip design services company Sondrel is offering a family of VLSI reference designs to design semiconductor system on chips (SoCs) faster and at lower cost. The reference designs contain ready to use SOC IP architectures. Chip designers can fast track designing a new chip using these reference designs, where Sondrel suggests all that is needed by VLSI architects is to select the most suitable semiconductor foundry and process, 3rd party silicon IP and also integrate any of your own IPs to create a customized chip. Sondrel also suggests its supply chain manufacturing service has further reduced risk and time to market (TTM) as it has created a series of pre-packaged supply chains specifically tailored for each of its Architecting the Future platforms.
Ian Walsh, Sondrel’s VP ASIC Business Development, explained; “Customers need to know the overall budget and time-to-market as key decision points in deciding whether to green light a new chip project or not. The process of turning a chip design into final silicon has many variables such as chip size, which foundry and process node to use, what testing regime to adopt, how to package the device, etc. As our range of SoC architectures gives five starting points, we have been able to reduce all these variables into a small matrix for each. This means we have the relevant data at our fingertips with predefined and costed production routes rather than having to start from scratch every time. In other words, we have used our design and supply chain manufacturing services to create off-the-shelf, costing models that complement each of our Architecting the Future platforms.

“A new chip is a major decision for any company and it is thus vital to mitigate risks. We reduce risks with our pre-packaged SFA designs and now reduce risks further with our pre-packaged supply chain routes for each. Unknowns are virtually removed giving a clearly defined and well-trodden path from design to shipping silicon making us the partner of choice to deliver on time and on budget.”

The following reference designs listed in their website

1. SFA200: This single channel video and data processing reference design is suitable for applications such as smart home, smart metering and any such multiple sensor interfaced data-processing device.

“In a given application area, there is always considerable duplication in the design of each ASIC as there is a lot of communality in the interconnections and supporting IP that forms the architecture of the device,” explained Graham Curren, Sondrel’s CEO. “Rather than start from scratch with each new design, we have created reference designs that distils our experience of designing the architecture for such chips to create reusable IP platforms. Onto this, we add the customer’s IP with some customisation to create a bespoke solution for that customer. This reduces the overall project time and risk as our IP platform is tested and ready to use which also means that the time to market is reduced as well. We are calling this Architecting the future.”

More on this can be learned at:

2. SFA 250A: This automotives specific reference design handles single channel Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) processing requirements. It contains an independent FuSa monitor compliant to ISO 26262 ASIL D – ASIC Safety Subsystem (ASS). This scalable reference design in terms of function and performance supports needs of your own customised IP.

To know more on this visit:

3. SFA 300: this reference design is for CPU clusters to support scalable quad channel video and data processing. This is suitable for processing intensive applications such as face recognition, high-resolution video processing, and surveillance systems. It is also suggested for blockchain servers, smart factories and medical data analysis.

"An ASIC with four CPU clusters is complex to design,” explained Rowan Naylor, a Principal Engineering Consultant at Sondrel. “Moving data around the chip without bottlenecks needs a Network on Chip, a multi-width data path, internal RAM scaled and distributed across the design for optimal performance, and data conflict arbitration. Plus, there are the data security aspects in the Arm-based security subsystem such as activity/intrusion detection. All this is already in the SFA 300 IP platform, so all that has to be done is integrating in the customer’s IP which cuts down the design time, risk and TTM.”

To know more on this visit:'s-latest-reference-ip-platform-enables-ultra-powerful-signal-and-data-processing-socs-to-be-created-faster-for-lower-costs

4. The other two include SFA350A is for ADAS systems and SFA100 is for edge IoT chip design.

More on this can be found at:

Author: Srinivasa Reddy N
Header ad