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Advanced Microelectronics Design & Prototype challenge

Posted December 29, 2018

The Microelectronic Design Software Solutions Bootcamp includes tutorials and products from Electronics Design Automation firms, Intellectual Property providers, supply chain risk management, hardware assurance capabilities, verification tools and techniques, and a demo on the DoD Trusted Silicon Stratus secure cloud based microelectronics design environment.

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How can you contribute to this $2 billion Department of Defense initiative?

Air Force Research Labs (AFRL), in partnership with AFWERX Vegas, is launching the Advanced Microelectronics Prototype and Design Challenge. The challenge seeks successfully designed and silicon-validated Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC) and System on a Chip (SoC) solutions using advanced process technology nodes.

The Advanced Microelectronics Prototype and Design Challenge is one of the most demanding of all the AFWERX challenges. Yet it is also one of the greatest opportunities we’ve seen. That’s because The USAF is providing access to a platform that includes a commercial cloud-based development environment, design and verification tools, IP libraries, design expertise support, and fabrication. Access to the EDA tools and IP libraries is valued at $10M per license, but the USAF is offering it FREE to selected participants.

With that level of support, imagine what you could contribute.

Please log in and learn more about the Advanced Microelectronics Prototype and Design Challenge.

There is no charge to register, there is no charge to participate.

What’s in it for you:

By participating in this challenge, you have the opportunity to:

  • Receive resources and support to develop cutting-edge SoC while maintaining the design IP that is yours to retain
  • Access a state of the art SoC development platform that includes design tools and critical IP functions, a value of up to $10M
  • Partner with the United States Air Force (USAF) to fabricate your SoC
  • Leverage AFWERX to augment your areas of expertise through peer and government partnerships
  • Attend the Challenge Showcase event/s in Las Vegas, if your solution is selected, to meet peers, USAF customers, other government agencies, and the investment community
  • Receive official recognition for you, your team, and your company
  • Help the USAF and improve the security of the United States
  • Gain access to a top Department of Defense initiative with an initial approved budget of $2 billion

Challenge Statement

What is your solution for a 14nm advanced Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC) or System on a Chip (SoC) that can operate and improve the features of an autonomous product of your choosing while maintaining the integrity (provenance, traceability) and security needs (information protection, mathematical algorithms) of critical systems?


PHASE 1: Submit Proposals
SUBMIT: 11/5/18 — 1/22/19
SHOWCASE: 2/19/19 — 2/20/19

PHASE 2: Design & Simulation
SUBMIT: 3/1/19 — 6/28/19
SHOWCASE: 7/30/19 — 7/31/19
PHASE 3: Physical Design
SUBMIT: 8/6/19 — 10/4/19
SHOWCASE: 10/15/19 — 10/16/19
PHASE 4: Physical Prototype
SUBMIT: 10/22/19 — 4/18/20
SHOWCASE: 5/5/20 — 5/6/20
PHASE 5: Prototype Testing

PHASE 6: Full Production

Available IP

The US Air Force is going to make IP available to you as part of your submission to assist in your expedited design of your solution.  When you submit your solution you will have the ability to checkbox the IP you plan to use from the relationships the Air Force already has in place.  You will also have the ability to let us know IP that you would require that has not already been negotiated which we will make best efforts to have available for you.

Funding Support

The US Air Force has invested heavily in supporting teams throughout this challenge to provide platforms and funding to you and your team.  In Phase 2 we are providing the design platform and the IP required to complete your design, in addition to this we will likely be offering some financial support to teams to assist in the design process with labor requirements.  In Phase 3 we have funding available to support the detailed design drawings and in Phases 4&5 we have funding available to build your prototype and test it.

Learning Materials

The US Air Force working closely with their EDA partners is pleased to announce that Cadence Design Systems is making available their online training materials, rapid adoption kits, and generic process design kits (PDKs) to the participants during the challenge.


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