Microsoft Corporation has tapped Siemens Digital Industries Software to participate in the Rapid Assured Microelectronics Prototypes (RAMP) Phase II initiative. Specifically, RAMP is a program established by the United States Department of Defense (DoD). Its aim is to develop secure design and prototyping capabilities to demonstrate how the DoD can securely leverage state-of-the-art microelectronics technologies.
In 2020, the DoD designated Microsoft as a central RAMP partner, as the DoD looked to leverage commercial industry expertise to modernize practices. To illustrate, Siemens has long been Microsoft’s lead partner for enabling electronic design automation (EDA) in the cloud. As part of the RAMP Phase II program, this collaboration extends into secure, cloud-based environments also built on the Microsoft Azure Government platform.
Siemens‘ contribution to RAMP Phase II will initially focus on physical or “back-end” integrated circuit (IC) design via Siemens‘ Calibre® platform, as this part of design creation is particularly challenging due to tight coupling of design techniques with the specific wafer fabrication processes targeted. Meanwhile, Siemens‘ Calibre platform is the industry’s golden back-end verification solution. Deployed throughout the global semiconductor ecosystem as the signoff solution of choice, the Calibre platform sets the pace for IC verification accuracy, reliability and performance.
Michael Buehler-Garcia, vice president for Calibre Design Solutions Product Management, said, “This additional collaboration will help to demonstrate that semiconductors designed through the RAMP II program can leverage Siemens‘ industry-leading verification expertise. In addition, expanding our cloud collaboration with Microsoft Azure Government is expected to generate valuable insights that can be fed back into the RAMP program in an effort to enhance the design and security of next-generation integrated circuits derived from the DoD’s RAMP program.”
Microsoft is utilizing all elements of the Calibre platform including its physical (DRC) layout versus schematic (LVS), reliability, and extraction solutions for the RAMP II program. The Calibre platform‘s interface offerings allow IC designers to interactively use Calibre with any design creation flow selected by RAMP II participating companies.
“Siemens‘s participation in the RAMP program brings the industry-leading back-end verification solution for DoD’s use for secure development of microelectronics for defense technologies,” said Mujtaba Hamid, general manager, Silicon, Modeling and Simulation, Microsoft. “Our experience with Siemens for EDA on the cloud to address commercial customer needs is now being leveraged in the RAMP Phase II program, to help the government and the defense industry develop silicon with secure access to advanced commercial design processes.”