Semiconductor Maker NXP Taps AWS To Speed Up Chip Design

To improve efficiency, Netherlands-based chip maker NXP is partnering with Amazon Web Services (AWS) in an effort to offload most of its design and testing workloads onto the cloud.

Specifically, NXP said it is "migrating the vast majority of its electronic design automation (EDA) workloads" to AWS, according to an announcement Thursday. The move promises to significantly increase NXP's productivity when it comes to manufacturing semiconductors for Industrial Internet of Things (IoT), automotive, communications and other industries.

As NXP explained, putting new chips through their paces is a time-consuming process that includes performance simulations, as well as tests for power, speed, security and other metrics. These processes -- which have historically been done in on-premises datacenters -- are very complex and compute-intensive, which means producing a single new semiconductor "can take many months or even years."

By putting these workloads on the AWS cloud, NXP argues, it can perform those same tests and simulations more quickly and for multiple chips at the same time.

"NXP engineers gain more time to focus on innovation rather than managing compute resources," the company added

Of particular benefit to NXP are AWS' various machine learning and analytics solutions, such as QuickSight and SageMaker. The company also maintains its data lake using AWS Glue, with Amazon S3 for data storage.

NXP CIO and senior vice president Olli Hyyppa highlighted the speed gains from partnering with AWS on chip design workloads, which should be particularly helpful amid the current worldwide chip shortage.

"We believe cloud-based EDA is critical to accelerating semiconductor innovation and getting new designs to market faster to power an increasingly digital world where more and more devices and infrastructure are connected," Hyyppa said. "This will give precious time back to our design engineers to focus on innovation and lead the transformation of the semiconductor industry."

About the Author

Gladys Rama (@GladysRama3) is the editorial director of Converge360.


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