The assignee for this patent, patent number 8631383, is
Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Integrated circuits are used today in a variety of different applications. Integrated circuits, are for instance, employed as individual electrical elements such as transistors for switching, amplifying or manipulating high frequency signals or high power signals, as sensors for detecting physical, chemical or biological influences of different sorts, and further individual electrical elements. More complex integrated circuits are also used, for instance, in the field of integrated sensors, which comprise, apart from the actual sensing elements, circuits to preprocess or to completely evaluate the acquired data from the sensing elements.
"Integrated circuits are also used in the field of more advanced computer technology, for instance, as processors, memories, application specific integrated circuits (ASIC) up to whole SOC products (SOC=System on Chip) which represent a whole computer system including a processor, memory, and further peripheral circuits on a single chip. Integrated circuits are furthermore employed in graphic-related, security-related, and numerical-related applications.
"The design and layout of integrated circuits is, in many cases, based on a standard cell design, in which standard cells are arranged and routed to allow a fast and flexible realization of different products and integrated circuits. In this design process, a number of partially contradicting measures and goals have to be balanced according to the application in mind. Some of the partially contradicting goals are, for example, area efficiency, costs, the complexity of the manufacturing process itself, the quality of the resulting integrated circuit, as well as other design goals, such as electrical, mechanical, or other parameters.
"In many cases, an optimization of the design with respect to one parameter leads to another parameter being changed to the contrary. Hence, the design process of integrated circuits in general may sometimes profit from a greater flexibility, compared to the result of a design and manufacturing process with a more limited flexibility."
In addition to obtaining background information on this patent, VerticalNews editors also obtained the inventor's summary information for this patent: "Embodiments according to the invention provide an integrated circuit with a substrate having a first cell and a second cell. The first and the second cells are adapted to perform a substantially same functionality, where corresponding functional structures of the first and the second cell are electrically connected, at different locations inside the standard cells, to information carrying signal interconnection lines. The functional structures are adapted to serve as an information carrying signal input or as an information carrying signal output.
"An embodiment according to the invention further provides a standard cell of an integrated circuit, or of a design library, which comprise a first and a second power supply rail portion, where the first and the second power supply rail portions and a first and a second borderline of the standard cell enclose an enclosed area of an overall area of the standard cell. The standard cell further comprises a conductive structure, which is adapted to carry an information carrying standard cell input signal or an information carrying standard cell output signal of the standard cell. The conductive structure is at least partially arranged outside the enclosed area such that the conductive structure is connectable outside the enclosed area to an information carrying signal interconnection line.
"An embodiment according to the invention provides a method for generating a layout of an integrated circuit based on a standard cell design, where at least some of the standard cells lack a predetermined contact for at least one information carrying standard cell input signal or for at least one information carrying standard cell output signal. The method comprises placing a plurality of standard cells in a standard cell area and routing information carrying signal lines for standard cell input signals or standard cell output signals. Routing comprises placing a contact for one of the one or more standard cell input signals or one of the one or more standard cell output signals of one of the placed standard cells.
"An embodiment according to the invention also provides a method for generating a layout of an integrated circuit based on a standard cell design, where at least some of the standard cells lack predetermined contacts for a well or a substrate. The method comprises placing a plurality of standard cells in a standard cell area, routing information carrying signals for at least one standard cell input signal or for at least one standard cell output signal between two of the placed standard cells or between one of the placed standard cells and a non-standard cell circuitry, to obtain routed signal interconnection lines, and placing, inside the standard cell area, a contact for the well or the substrate, taking into account the locations of structural elements of the placed standard cells and the routed signal interconnection lines."
For more information, see this patent: Wagner, Michael. Integrated Circuits, Standard Cells, and Methods for Generating a Layout of an Integrated Circuit. U.S. Patent Number 8631383, filed
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