Cadence Develops Most Accurate Cell-Based Extractor with Fire & Ice

8/13/2003 - Cadence Design Systems, Inc. (NYSE:CDN) announced delivery and early market acceptance of the new release of Fire & Ice® QXC, the most accurate cell-based sign-off extractor for processes at 130 nanometers and below. Fire & Ice 3.2 was shown to be the most accurate in an independent benchmark run on all commercially available cell-based extractors. It incorporates new-generation 3-D models that correctly account for all copper and optical effects, enabling designers to reduce timing margins and improve performance and yield of their designs so they can accelerate the time from chip design to volume production.

"Fujitsu has been testing Fire & Ice QXC 3.2 in our 90nm flow, and we are very pleased with the results," said Kazuyuki Kawauchi, general manager, Technology Development, LSI group, Fujitsu Limited. "We have tested QXC for accuracy, speed and capacity, and it exceeded our requirements for all three criteria. We are looking forward to installing this version of QXC into our production environment as soon as possible."

The increase in system-on-a-chip (SoC) integration and shrinking semiconductor process geometries pose new challenges for extraction engines and especially their model-generator engines. Key physical and optical effects—for example, resistance as a function of width, metal fill, wire edge enlargement, dishing and erosion—significantly reduce the accuracy of current-generation extraction engines. The new-generation Cadence® modeling in the latest release of the Fire & Ice product line addresses all of these challenges.

Fire & Ice QXC 3.2 was the clear winner in an independent accuracy benchmark run by a leading semiconductor manufacturer, which included all commercially available cell-based extractors. The test was run on a 90nm benchmark of approximately 11,000 nets, with a commercial field solver as the reference. Fire & Ice QXC 3.2 yielded an exceptionally low mean error value of 0.05 percent and a standard deviation of 1.96.

"Customers are rapidly adopting the latest release of Fire & Ice QXC, reaffirming our leadership in parasitic extraction," said Jim Bailey, general manager of the Nanometer Analysis and Verification group at Cadence. "With Fire & Ice QXC, customers gain the more accurate timing, better performance and improved yield needed to transform their designs into high-volume products."

Fire & Ice QXC 3.2 integrates seamlessly with the Cadence EncounterTM digital IC design platform, including Cadence timing and signal integrity analysis and power verification solutions (SignalStormTM, CeltICTM and VoltageStorm®). Used during place-and-route of complex ASIC/ASSP and SoC designs, Fire & Ice QXC extracts interconnect parasitic data directly into the SoC Encounter timing database format for timing and signal integrity analysis or in standard DSPF or SPEF formats. Fire & Ice QXC also integrates easily with any standard place and route or analysis flow via industry standard file formats.

Fire & Ice QXC 3.2 is available now. A one-year license for Fire & Ice QXC 3.2 is available for $50,000 under a promotion that runs through the end of the year. The standard one-year license is $144,000.

About Cadence
Cadence is the largest supplier of electronic design technologies, methodology services, and design services. Cadence solutions are used to accelerate and manage the design of semiconductors, computer systems, networking and telecommunications equipment, consumer electronics, and a variety of other electronics-based products. With approximately 5,000 employees and 2002 revenues of approximately $1.3 billion, Cadence has sales offices, design centers, and research facilities around the world. The company is headquartered in San Jose, Calif., and traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol CDN. More information about the company, its products and services is available at

Cadence, the Cadence logo, Fire & Ice and VoltageStorm are registered trademarks of Cadence Design Systems, Inc. and Encounter, SignalStorm and CeltIC are trademarks of Cadence.

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