SkyWater Technology Joins CHIPS Alliance to Further Efforts to Make Chip Design and Production More Accessible

By September 16, 2021Announcement

SkyWater furthers collaboration with CHIPS Alliance members on open source shuttle projects

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 16, 2021 – CHIPS Alliance, the leading consortium advancing common and open hardware for interfaces, processors and systems, today announced that SkyWater Technology (NASDAQ: SKYT) has become a member of the organization. SkyWater provides custom development, volume manufacturing and advanced packaging services for a wide range of silicon, including solutions based on the free and open RISC-V instruction set architecture (ISA).

“The pace of open source hardware innovation is continuing to heat up. We are proud to have helped make it possible to design, verify and manufacture SoCs that have been entirely developed with open source technologies, from process technology to intellectual property and the automation environment,” said Ross Miller, Vice President, Strategic Marketing & Business Unit at SkyWater Technology. “CHIPS Alliance has already generated strong momentum with its work and we look forward to collaborating with the organization and its membership to take open source innovation to new heights.”

In May 2021, SkyWater and fellow CHIPS Alliance member Efabless launched the chipIgnite program to bring chip design and fabrication to the masses. SkyWater’s open source 130 nm CMOS platform will be used to fabricate chips for the chipIgnite program. The automotive-grade mixed-signal platform is well suited for IoT and edge computing as it is designed to support both digital and analog circuits with embedded non-volatile memory for a wide range of SoC architectures. Open source designs and private commercial designs that include non-open source IP are both eligible to participate in the program. 

The chipIgnite program extends SkyWater’s work with Google, eFabless, Antmicro and the OpenROAD project, among other partners, on the Open MPW Shuttle Program. The multi-project wafer (MPW) program provides fabrication for fully open source projects using SkyWater’s Open Source PDK. Costs for fabrication, packaging, evaluation boards and shipping are covered by Google. During the first round of the shuttle run, called MPW-ONE, 40 open source designs were selected to be fabricated at no cost to designers; 60 percent of those designs were submitted by first-time ASIC designers. The second phase, MPW-TWO, is in progress now and the parts and assembled boards will be shipped to the project owners by the end of the year. 

“The chipIgnite and MPW programs that SkyWater has enabled perfectly align with CHIPS Alliance’s mission to make chip design more accessible, while significantly reducing the cost of creating and fabricating chips,” said Rob Mains, General Manager at CHIPS Alliance. “We are pleased to have SkyWater formally join CHIPS Alliance as we continue to collaborate to break down the barriers of chip design.”

About the CHIPS Alliance

The CHIPS Alliance is an organization which develops and hosts high-quality, open source hardware code (IP cores), interconnect IP (physical and logical protocols), and open source software development tools for design, verification, and more. The main aim is to provide a barrier-free collaborative environment, to lower the cost of developing IP and tools for hardware development. The CHIPS Alliance is hosted by the Linux Foundation. For more information, visit chipsalliance.org.

About the Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation was founded in 2000 and has since become the world’s leading home for collaboration on open source software, open standards, open data, and open hardware. Today, the Foundation is supported by more than 1,000 members and its projects are critical to the world’s infrastructure, including Linux, Kubernetes, Node.js and more. The Linux Foundation focuses on employing best practices and addressing the needs of contributors, users, and solution providers to create sustainable models for open collaboration. For more information, visit linuxfoundation.org.