Rambus, Northwest Logic certify interoperability of HBM2 interface offering for networking, data center applications

Rambus Inc. announced on Monday validated interoperability between its HBM2 PHY and Northwest Logics’ HBM2 Memory Controller Core. The solution builds on the growing ecosystem of Rambus partner products that interoperate with its latest HBM2 PHY IP core.

The combined HBM2 solution is designed to support high-performance networking and server applications in the data center and communications markets that require the maximum amount of bandwidth available through HBM2.

The Northwest Logic HBM2 Memory Controller Cores are optimized for use in both ASICs and FPGAs, and support full-rate, half-rate and quarter-rate operations. The cores provide a solution that can be configured to exact customer requirements, are silicon-proven and are verified with the Rambus HBM2 PHY.

The Rambus HBM2 PHY and Northwest Logic HBM2 Memory Controller are each fully JEDEC compliant to the HBM2 standard, allowing the PHY and memory controller to interoperate. The Rambus HBM2 PHY is a high-performance memory IP core that features reduced power consumption and a small form factor. It combines 2.5D packaging with a wider interface at a lower clock speed, delivering higher efficiency and lower power consumption compared to other memory solutions on the market.

The Rambus HBM Gen2 PHY is fully compliant to the JEDEC HBM2 standard and supports data rates up to 2000 Mbps per data pin, resulting in a total bandwidth of 256 GB/s. The interface features 8 independent channels, each containing 128 bits for a total data width of 1024 bits, and support for a stack height of 2, 4 or 8 DRAMs.

In addition, the PHY is designed for a 2.5D system with an interposer for routing signals between the DRAM and PHY. This combination of signal density and stacked form factor requires special design consideration. In order to enable easy implementation and improved flexibility of design in such a complex system, Rambus performs complete signal and power integrity analysis on the entire 2.5D system to ensure that all signal, power and thermal requirements are met.

“Our work with Northwest Logic gives Rambus the functionality to provide a verified solution that reduces the engineering workload and time to market for chip designers,” said Luc Seraphin, senior vice president and general manager of the Rambus Memory and Interfaces Division. “As Rambus extends its footprint in PHY support for leading-edge technologies, collaborative interoperability is essential for our end customers that demand early adoption. Memory interfaces are increasingly important in today’s new workloads, and the combination of the Rambus HBM2 PHY and Northwest Logic HBM2 Memory Controller core is a natural fit to support customer demands on both sides.”

“Our HBM2 Memory Controller Core has been successfully deployed in a wide variety of customer systems demonstrating high reliability and performance,” said Brian Daellenbach, president of Northwest Logic. “We are excited to offer a complete HBM2 solution with Rambus ensuring our customers achieve the best possible combined memory solution for their high data demands.”

Earlier this month, GLOBALFOUNDRIES demonstrated silicon functionality of a 2.5D packaging solution for its high-performance 14nm FinFET FX-14 integrated design system for application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs).

The 2.5D ASIC solution includes a stitched interposer capability to overcome lithography limitations and a two terabits per second (2Tbps) multi-lane HBM2 PHY, developed in partnership with Rambus.

Building on the 14nm FinFET demonstration, the solution will be integrated on the company’s next-generation FX-7 ASIC design system built on GF’s 7nm FinFET process technology.

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