Gauda, Inc. recently announced a breakthrough technology that can accelerate OPC (optical proximity correction) and OPV (optimal proximity verification) up to 200 times faster than traditional solutions, running on today’s desktop computers. Gauda achieved this acceleration without any specialized hardware or FPGAs, but by developing a new breed of algorithms utilizing CPUs and GPUs (graphical processing units) that are traditionally used for gaming. With Gauda technology and approximately 10 all-commodity desktop computers, a large 45nm full-chip layout can be decorated overnight. Similarly, a single desktop computer is sufficient to complete verification overnight.
To solve RET (resolution enhancement technologies) problems, the only current solution is to keep increasing the size of CPU clusters, which often number in the thousands. Tool vendors are at an inflection point where the time it takes to rewrite tools is lagging behind the changes in process nodes. Fortunately, Gauda has anticipated this inflection point, realizing an attractive speed advantage for OPC using GPUs. Gauda engineers started by studying the available computational resources commonly found in typical desktop computers and optimized those resources to speed up the RET-related computations without sacrificing accuracy. From the beginning, the company decided not to use any specialized hardware.
Gauda has demonstrated technology that is linearly scalable to several hundred desktops, making it possible to complete OPC or verification tasks within a few hours. Gauda technology runs on standard desktop computers equipped with graphics cards usually sold by companies such as NVIDIA and ATI. Gauda technology is seamlessly portable to current and future GPU platforms. This and many other features of their technology make it a perfect candidate to enable DFM efforts, since the solution is available with minimal or no additional hardware cost.
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