In a major breakthrough in electrical electronics hardware, IIT Bombay in collaboration with SCL (Semi-Conductor Laboratory) successfully demonstrated CMOS (complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor) 180nm based production-ready 8-bit memory technology. This feat is a game-changer as it enables secure memory and encryption hardware for the country.
The team invented the one-time programmable (OTP) memory-based technology on ultra-thin deposited silicon dioxide (a few atoms thick) instead of the existing gate oxide-based OTP technology. In contrast to the high voltage required by gate oxide breakdown (a popular OTP memory), IIT Bombay’s memory chip uses less power and chip-area as the need for boosted voltage supply is avoided.
“One out of 100 ideas make the journey from Lab to Fab. The exacting process of exceeding 95% yield requires an unrelenting multi-disciplinary team supported by a world-class R&D infrastructure to form an enduring collaboration. Once successful such technology opens possibilities of touching countless lives, in this case, through chips with a tiny memory,” said Prof. Udayan Ganguly, who leads the team at IIT Bombay.
Semi-Conductor Laboratory (SCL) leading from the front
The small chips are widely compilated and their manufacturing is more complex when it comes to massive mass production. Sensor chips are basically semiconductor circuit elements that are used to convert changes to some physical parameter to an electrical signal. In India, the research on sensor chips and semiconductors has been immense and impressive.
But when it comes to manufacturing, the semiconductor manufacturing ecosystem in India is led by Semi-Conductor Laboratory (SCL), Mohali, Department of Space and is the most advanced semiconductor manufacturing fab in the country. A fab is basically a large facility with cleanroom environments used to produce memory chips.
The vision of the Semi-Conductor Laboratory is to create a strong research and development base in the country in the field of microelectronics. The lab design and development of devices in cutting-edge technology and to transform SCL as a Centre of Excellence in Microelectronics in the country.
Ever-expanding need of sensorchips in India and around the globe
Sensorchips – they are tiny, yet they power the whole world. India’s digital footprint has grown exponentially, from online transactions through UPI to the everyday education of children, electronics touches all parts of Indian society. And one essential component in all electronic devices is sensorchips.
It powers sensors & the internet of things, high-speed communication, big-data & computing, green energy, and security & encryption around the globe. But the five main sectors in which electronics are contributing at large are security, healthcare, agriculture, pedagogy, and energy & environment.