Semiconductors
Top stories summarized by our editors
4/20/2017

Japan's NTT Basic Research Laboratories has come up with a way to make an on-chip nanowire laser that could lead to transmission speed improvements in photonic networks. "We want to demonstrate that we're able to integrate a number of photonic devices by having different functionalities on a single chip," NTT's Masato Takiguchi said.

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NTT
4/20/2017

Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories say they have formed nanoparticles into nanowire-array structures using pressure in the place of chemicals. They say the stress-induced fabrication process can be completed in nanoseconds.

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New Electronics
4/20/2017

Achieving the functional safety requirements of the ISO 26262 standard in automotive electronics can be realized in a more cost-effective manner through automated testing and verification software tools, Mark Pitchford writes. Such tools must be used throughout the software development process, he notes.

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Electronic Design
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software development
4/19/2017

Spreadtrum Communications has reportedly agreed to have Intel fabricate another 14-nanometer chip under their foundry deal, industry sources say. Spreadtrum announced its Intel-made SC9861G-IA mobile system-on-a-chip device earlier this year, and the second SoC from Intel is said to be planned for a third-quarter debut.

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DigiTimes
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Intel, Spreadtrum Communications
4/19/2017

University of Toronto researchers report squashing quantum dots into an oblate shape has a performance-improving effect on colloidal quantum-dot lasers. The team used a ligand-exchange process to form the asymmetric CQDs for better optical gain in semiconductor-based lasers.

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University of Toronto
4/19/2017

The growing contest between the US and China for semiconductor superiority will have an effect on Toshiba's ability to survive as it auctions its memory chip business. Meanwhile, Bain Capital has reportedly joined with SK Hynix in bidding for the Toshiba chip unit, market sources say.

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Toshiba, Bain Capital, SK Hynix
4/19/2017

Daimler has yet to select a semiconductor supplier in its partnership with Robert Bosch to develop autonomous vehicle technology, while Intel, Qualcomm, Nvidia and others are contending for a premier spot in the race for self-driving car chips. "We are working with several partners in pre-development," Ola Kaellenius of Mercedes-Benz told reporters at the Shanghai Motor Show in China.

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Reuters
4/19/2017

Advanced Micro Devices is offering new Radeon RX 500 graphics cards containing second-generation Polaris-architecture chips, with prices ranging from $79 to $229. AMD's Simon Ning noted that most gaming PCs are not equipped for virtual reality, providing an incentive for gamers to upgrade their graphics cards this year.

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VentureBeat, CNET
4/19/2017

Intel's dominance in providing processors for servers in data centers is being challenged as Amazon and Google develop alternatives to the ubiquitous x86 architecture and more server chip designers turn to low-power ARM cores. Microsoft is planning to use ARM-based processors in its Azure cloud data centers.

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data center, Intel, Amazon, Google, Microsoft
4/18/2017

Rambus and Microsoft researchers worked together to develop a cryogenic DRAM prototype, which they say will help data centers conserve energy. "With the increasing challenges in conventional approaches to improving memory capacity and power efficiency, our early research indicates that a significant change in the operating temperature of DRAM using cryogenic techniques may become essential in future memory systems," said Gary Bronner of Rambus.

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Rambus, Microsoft