Silvaco, Inc. and ProTek Devices have begun a licensing agreement for ProTek Devices to use Silvaco’s technology computer aided design (TCAD) and electronic design automation (EDA) tools for the design of various circuit protection components. This includes transient voltage suppressor (TVS) arrays, steering diodes, analog devices, and more. ProTek Devices will bring to market many new components throughout 2014 using Silvaco’s toolset. The agreement extends ProTek Devices’ use of Silvaco’s solutions past 2013. ProTek Devices leveraged many of Silvaco’s IC design suites in 2013. They include Silvaco’s TCAD, analog mixed signal (AMS) and custom integrated circuit CAD (IC CAD). As a result, ProTek Devices brought to market many circuit protection components in 2013. The devices were sold into applications including networking, communications, medical, military, automotive and industrial systems.
"Silvaco's toolset, and more importantly their product application support, have been instrumental in allowing us to expedite our design process and ensure design success for our components," said Sudesh Nayak, design engineer at ProTek Devices. "I recall one instance in particular where our design team used the entire EDA Silvaco toolsets for an LED driver we introduced in 2013. The flow consisted of the Gateway tool for schematic entry and SmartSpice for circuit simulation. We then turned to IC CAD's Expert layout editor, the Guardian tool for physical verification, and Hipex for post layout netlist RC extraction and full chip simulations. When we used these tools, they yielded results for the LED driver that verified market viability. This was just one of many successful uses of the Silvaco EDA flow. Based on these concluding results, we've decided to continue our use of Silvaco's tools in 2014."
ProTek Devices also used Silvaco's TCAD tools in 2013 to perform process and device simulation for many TVS and low capacitance arrays. Diffusion profiles (structure files) were created using the Athena process simulator in order to calculate required surface concentration, junction depths, and peak fields. The structure files were then imported to Atlas, Silvaco's device simulator, to generate current-voltage and capacitance curves. Subsequent silicon testing for breakdown voltage, capacitance, and the spreading resistance profile very closely resembled simulation results. This helps expedite time to market, reduce design costs, and in turn lower the cost of components for customers.
"Our application engineer support group has worked with the ProTek Devices team on many component designs," said Michel Blanchette, regional applications engineering manager at Silvaco. "We've had a chance to work together on new PDK releases for different foundries, new tool transitions, and many other support related activities. We are excited about ProTek Devices' continued commitment to the Silvaco toolset. We look forward to assisting ProTek Devices achieve many more successful projects in 2014."