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Sequence Uses Patented Inductance to Extend Leadership in Extraction for Communications Market; Columbus-RF Offers First Mutual Inductance Capability in Marketplace.

Business Editors/High-Tech Writers

SANTA CLARA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 31, 2002

Sequence Design Inc., the SoC Design Closure Company, today announced the availability of mutual inductance in the third generation of its Columbus-RF parasitic extractor. Columbus-RF customers use the tool extensively for designing ICs for high-speed fixed and portable communications.

LeCroy, one of more than 30 Columbus-RF customers, welcomes the addition of mutual inductance modeling to the product. "Extracting for mutual inductance on differential lines will significantly improve the accuracy of our simulations," said Keith Roberts, IC design group leader at LeCroy Corporation. "Our new WaveMaster oscilloscope is a testament to the technological advancements achievable using today's high speed processes and accurate modeling. With this release, Sequence maintains its leadership in market-driven extraction solutions by providing IC designers with the unique ability to extract for inductance effects."

Exar Corporation has also been an early user of the inductance capabilities in Columbus-RF for its optical networking IC designs. The company has used Columbus' nanometer modeling technology to address the interconnect inductance in advance process technologies.

The urgent need to model not only loop inductance but also mutual inductance arises from 10+ GHz designs, low-resistance, high-density copper interconnect and nanometer geometries. When a number of densely packed signal lines in a bus switch simultaneously at very sharp edges, they can induce noise in a nearby signal line. The noise can cause a false switch to the gate at the far end of the victim signal line. Designers must model such elements as the highest-frequency paths in optical-networking chips, where both loop and mutual inductance significantly affect circuit performance.

The new addition to Columbus-RF is built on a growing portfolio of Intellectual Property (IP). Sequence holds five extraction patents, with an additional two pending and one that has been recently allowed. This IP is leveraged extensively in this latest release, offering IC designers of fixed and portable communications the most comprehensive extraction tool available. Loop inductance has been offered as part of Columbus-RF for more than three years.

Gary Smith, chief analyst at Gartner Dataquest, cited Sequence's inductance capability in "EDA 2001: It's Good To Be an EDA Vendor." Extracting electrical effects like inductance is critical to the SoCs that drive leading communications markets like OC192 and 3G. Without correct extraction, chips will fail and will require rework at a significant cost in NRE (non-recurring engineering) and lost market opportunity.

Columbus-RF has tremendous momentum in the marketplace, gaining more than 30 customers in a single year, including such leading companies as IBM, NEC, Ericsson, Qualcomm and Nortel Networks. IBM supports Columbus-RF for designers using their SiGe processes. Columbus-RF libraries are available for IBM's 5HP, 5AM, 6HP and 7HP processes. The product is also available for CMOS and GaAs processes.

Columbus-RF is part of Sequence's ExtractionStage, a suite of high-performance EDA tools tuned for complex multi-million-gate SoCs (systems-on-a-chip) and analog/mixed-signal design. ExtractionStage is the only suite of interconnect parasitic tools extracting high-accuracy resistance (R), coupled-capacitance (C), and inductance (L) values across a wide range of design styles.

"Our communications design customers have driven us to extend our inductance extraction leadership to mutual inductance," said Kevin Walsh, vice president of product management, Sequence Design. "With this release, Sequence is leveraging mutual inductance technology critical for meeting the capacity and speed demands of emerging wired, wireless and optical communications networking applications."

Tuned specifically for high-frequency designers, Columbus-RF features industry-leading modeling capabilities for RC and inductance in RF circuits. The tool's tight integration with tools like Cadence's Analog Design Environment ensures ease of use and ease of adoption.

Inductance extraction is becoming critical not only in communications design, but also in pure digital designs. SoC technology makes extraction and analysis of on-chip inductance critical during VLSI design. Interconnect resistance and capacitance (RC) delay dominates gate delay at today's transistor feature sizes. As silicon technology moves to 130 nanometers and below, magnetic coupling from inductance is emerging as the next parasitic design challenge. Devices and interconnect are packed very closely together in SoCs making signal timing and signal integrity ever more difficult to predict. Experiments have shown significant variation in far-end response and immediate next-neighbor coupling on a 32-bit bus. Comparing results from simulations of interconnect modeled with and without inductance shows differences in delay of 17% and coupling noise of 50%. Further studies on a clock net in the presence of a power and ground grid indicate a 52% change in delay (86ps versus 131ps) and a 111% variation in worst case slew (9ps versus 19ps) when considering not only loop inductance, but also mutual inductance.


Columbus-RF will be available with mutual inductance in March 2002. This new release is available as an upgrade to existing customers. A one-year US time-based license is priced at $87,500.

About Sequence

Sequence Design, Inc., the SoC Design Closure Company(SM), enables system-on-chip designers to bring higher-performance and lower-power integrated circuits quickly to tapeout. Sequence's physical design software and solutions give its more than 100 customers the competitive advantage they need to excel in aggressive technology markets, despite demanding complexity and time-to-market issues of sub-180 nanometer design.

Sequence has worldwide development and field service operations. The company was formed through the merger of Sente, Inc., Sapphire Design Automation, Inc. and Frequency Technology. Sequence is privately held. Sequence is a member of Cadence Design Systems' Connections(TM)and Mentor Graphics' Open Door(TM)partnership programs.

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Date:Jan 31, 2002
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