Adiabatic Logic Limited, the Cambridge, UK-based company focused on creating and licensing intellectual property (IP) in the low power technology arena, has received a £500,000 funding boost from the UK Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
The Exceptional Research and Development Grant was awarded to Adiabatic Logic’s IP (intellectual property) holding company, Midas Green Limited.
Awarded for projects that will lead to technological developments of strategic importance for a technology or industrial sector, the grant will enable Adiabatic Logic to accelerate the development of its patented Intelligent Output Driver (IOD), which delivers 50-75% dynamic power savings in chip I/O for portable devices such as laptops, smartphones, handheld computers, digital cameras and MP3 players.
Adiabatic Logic is now looking to close its first funding round, which, coupled with the DTI funding, will enable it to produce 130nm technology-specific, production-worthy IP cells and a design kit compatible with leading electronic design automation (EDA) tools. The company will also use the capital to develop at least two credible reference design wins to prove IOD delivers the power savings in leading-edge silicon.
In addition to its power saving potential, Adiabatic Logic’s IOD solution offers a multitude of other potential benefits to IC and system developers. For example, it can reduce the overall component count and bill of material (BOM) cost by minimising battery size, cutting DC-DC converter/thermal management costs and eliminating the requirement for terminating resistors.
The first silicon implementation of IOD was completed in October 2003 using a 0.6-micron process technology. The results showed power savings of more than 50% compared with traditional I/O schemes.
Earlier this year, Adiabatic Logic signed a co-operation agreement with IMEC, Europe’s largest independent microelectronics and nanotechnology research centre, which will result in IOD being incorporated into IMEC’s library of radiation hardened 180 nm technology, for use in space, medical and scientific applications.