SMIC and M31 Introduce Differentiated IP Solutions for Storage Controller Applications

SHANGHAI -- Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation and M31 Technology Corporation announce that SMIC will expand its IP portfolio with M31's differentiated high speed interface IP solutions. The technology will target solid-state drive (SSD), Universal Flash Storage (UFS), and USB applications markets, and roll out a variety of IP solutions for storage controller applications. Based on SMIC's logic processes from 110nm to 28nm, the storage controller application platform is capable of providing products with low power consumption, high performance, and compact die size to customers; while at the same time bring more differentiated applications to SMIC's technology platforms.

SMIC has used M31 Technology's new generation PCIe 3.0 physical layer silicon IP on its 40nm low leakage process to provide leading edge products for the SSD market, and it has been tested with various controllers to demonstrate compliance with PCI-SIG specifications. In order to cope with the demand of various bandwidths, this IP provides 1 lane, 2 lane, and 4 lane options so that customers can develop chips for supporting PCIe 3.0 SSD. Furthermore, SMIC has decided to implement M31's PCIe 3.0 physical layer silicon IP on its 28nm advanced process. This IP solution will provide customers with higher-speed and more power-saving options for their products.

Since Universal Flash Storage (UFS 2.0) will become the mainstream specification for embedded memory devices, SMIC is using M31's MIPI M-PHY physical layer IP on its 55LL process to fulfill the market needs. This IP is designed for high bandwidth and low power consumption, with silicon verified on controller blocks from various partners, in compliance with UFS 2.0 systems. In addition, M31 plans to develop MIPI M-PHY physical layer IP on 28nm HK and 40nm LL process technologies as a next step. This IP will not only support dual channel technology but also has an exceptional power-saving sleep mode, a feature suitable for the new generation of mobile devices.

As for USB applications, M31's BCK (Built-in-Clock) technology provides a crystal-less solution for mobile applications. This solution, developed on 55nm/110nm processes, can help customers shorten the time to mass production. The new generation of BCK technology not only supports the traditional USB 1.1 / 2.0 / 3.0 devices, but also supports the input frequency 32.768KHz. It expands BCK technology to USB host applications and also meets the needs of IoT applications with its low power consumption.

With the popularity of Type-C interface, M31 Technology has developed USB3.1 / USB3.0 PHY IP on SMIC's 28nm and 40nm process. This solution also builds the external high-speed switch into the PHY IP based on customers' needs. This built-in technology supports non-directional plug-and-play and the detection of different configurations of VBUS, and has been successfully implemented in customers' SoC design.

"By focusing on the development of advanced technologies, SMIC is also committed to developing specialty technologies and differentiated products," said Dr. Tianshen Tang, Senior Vice President of SMIC's Design Service Center: "In the field of storage controller products, SMIC's logic process technologies and years of accumulated IPs have matured and gone into mass production. We can provide customers with differentiated solutions to meet the needs of big data storage for controller products with high performance and low power consumption. M31 is one of SMIC's important IP suppliers with outstanding capabilities of providing diversified high speed interface IP solutions to customers. We are looking forward to working closely and having a win-win situation in the future".

H.P. Lin, M31 Technology's Chairman said: "SMIC has collaborated with M31 to deliver various silicon IP solutions, like PCIe 3.0, MIPI M-PHY 3.0, and USB 3.0 on its advanced process technology. Such IP can solve the needs of inter-operability in various types of mainstream memory devices. The M31's IP enables SoC designers to focus on its own design block, without worrying about IP interfering with the design. Through the collaboration with SMIC, we believe that we can better support global customers together with excellent differentiated high speed interface IPs and professional services."

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