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OneSpin Blog

Explore our IC Integrity story and meet the minds behind it

The Early Bird Gets More Secure Hardware

By Rob van Blommestein, Head of Marketing at OneSpin: A Siemens Business

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression “The early bird gets the worm.” This proverb emphasizes the importance of starting something early to maximize the potential outcome. In terms of hardware security, this idiom is spot on. Cybersecurity shouldn’t only be about protecting the software from attacks. Hardware is just as…

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Easing the Burden of Early Bug Detection

By Rob van Blommestein, Head of Marketing for OneSpin: A Siemens Business

Integrated circuit designers are under constant pressure to deliver bug free code that meets evermore rigorous requirements. It is well known that the more bugs that can be detected early in the development process, the faster and easier that development effort will be. However, early bug detection requires a verification…

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Does Your IC Security Need a Renovation?

What do you want to protect? How will you protect it? What do you stand to lose if you don’t?

By McKenzie Ross, Director Corporate Marketing, OneSpin: A Siemens Business

Five years ago, I moved from Silicon Valley to Gig Harbor, Washington and bought a fixer-upper. As part of my ongoing (and extensive) home renovations, I just finished having the entire exterior redone: roof, siding, paint,…

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Formally Verifying SystemC/C++ Designs

By Rob van Blommestein

We’re seeing an increase in the number of designs employing SystemC/C++. This isn’t surprising given the fact that specific use models have emerged to drive common design flows across engineering teams leading to the adoption of high-level synthesis (HLS) at many large semiconductor and electronic systems companies. These HLS tools are a popular method to rapidly generate…

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6 Minutes of Security: Staying A Step Ahead of Hackers with Continuous Verification

By John Hallman

We’re all familiar with the apps on our phones and how often they get updated. Most of the time, these updates are done over the air quickly and easily. Other times, a completely new download of the software is required. But let’s take a look at the hardware platforms that the software runs on. What happens when the hardware needs to be upgraded? Today’s hardware platforms are…

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Precision: A Case Study for Success

By Rob van Blommestein

Recently, I was watching a documentary on the NASA Perseverance mission to Mars. I’ve always been fascinated by space travel and the engineering efforts to make it happen. We’ve all heard that the landing for this trip to Mars was the most precise in history, but what the documentary brought to light is the precision involved in each and every aspect of the Perseverance…

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6 Minutes of Security: Achieving Automotive Safety with Security

By John Hallman

Security researchers have demonstrated extensively how cybersecurity attacks can have disastrous consequences in automobiles. A successful car hack in an automotive control system such as the drive train or brakes could affect an entire fleet of vehicles and put many lives in danger. Moreover, car owners' privacy and the protection of intellectual properties (IPs) and other assets…

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The Case for FPGA Equivalence Checking

By Rob van Blommestein

Formal Equivalence Checking (EC) has become a standard part of the ASIC development flow, replacing almost all gate level simulation with a rigorous consistency check between pre- and post-synthesized code.

 

In the Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) space, EC is still a relatively new concept but is rapidly becoming important given the large devices being employed…

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Trust is Not a Good Feeling

By: John Hallman, OneSpin Solutions

Although you may feel good about your suppliers, 3PIPs require an independent trust assessment process.

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Make Hardware Strong with CWE

By: Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager, OneSpin Solutions

Addressing security-relevant hardware weaknesses is crucial to designing vulnerability-free IPs and chips. CWE™ is a useful resource. It has recently added support for common hardware security weaknesses.

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Who's Got the Hot Potato?

By: Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager, OneSpin Solutions

As new security vulnerabilities are discovered in automotive electronics, who is responsible for protecting my car? ISO/SAE 21434 may have an answer.

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Chips Listening to Gibberish

By: Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager, OneSpin Solutions

By Pre-silicon verification engineers assume that hardware interfaces must behave according to well-defined protocol rules. What happens when the rules are broken?

We all talk gibberish once in a while. At least, I do. I might be in a silly mood, thinking aloud, listening to music or talking over the phone using my headphones…

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IC Integrity Verification Content a Focus at Industry Virtual Conferences – Tackling Functional Correctness, Safety, Trust and Security

By: Rob van Blommestein, Head of Marketing 

We’re six months into the pandemic, and it looks like in-person conferences are becoming a distant memory and that virtual conferences are now becoming routine. It used to be that traveling to a conference (sometimes long distances) was the only way to be able to attend technical presentations and learn about the latest technologies and methodologies,…

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6 Minutes of Security: Cybersecurity Risks in Automotive Electronics

By: Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager 

I love the summer holidays! Even more when I haven’t much of a plan and can enjoy a sense of freedom and adventure. A few years back, I went traveling with a campervan with a few friends, and we did exactly that. In fact, with the COVID-19 situation, traveling with a campervan is a great holiday option. The only problem is that I don’t quite enjoy…

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Real Highlights for Virtual DAC 2020

By Sergio Marchese, OneSpin Solutions

As the 57th edition of the Design Automation Conference goes online, learning about the latest, most efficient IC integrity assurance solutions is easier than ever

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FPGA Equivalence Checking for a Nuclear Safety Controller

By Rob van Blommestein, Head of Marketing at OneSpin

Every chip development team wants to find and fix all the bugs they possibly can in pre-silicon verification. Turning a chip to fix issues found in the bring-up lab incurs high costs and product delays; bugs found in the field are even more expensive to repair. But for some applications, including military/aerospace, implanted medical devices,…

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Access To Verification Knowledge While Remote Working

By Rob van Blommestein, Head of Marketing

As someone who is used to working from home, the recent global events haven’t had as much of an impact on my ability to keep productive. Our team at OneSpin is very adept with remote-working relationships as many of us reside all over the world. Having said this, we recognize that not everyone or every company shares in this situation.

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How to make processors trustworthy

By Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager at OneSpin

Modern integrated circuits (ICs) provide the computational and system control capabilities to process enormous amounts of data, make safety-critical decisions in real time, and protect sensitive data.

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The Whole Is Other than the Sum of the Parts

By Radosław Nawrot, CEO at Radalco

I’m writing these words in the time of a global health crisis. Sitting in an empty office, implementing social distancing theory, I realize that this time might be an unexpected but precious gift.  A gift of time I did not have before.  A time to think at a more global level. Time to go back and see daily routine from a different perspective.

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RISC-V: An Open Source Approach Accelerating EDA Implementations

By Shaun Giebel, OneSpin Solutions

The idea of free and open software has been around for decades and was grown out of a need to be able to easily enhance the software so it can do what you require of it. There was somewhat of an anti-establishment sentiment that advocated for open sharing over corporations controlling access of the software.

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Keep The Wooden Horse Out Of Your Chip

By Sergio Marchese, OneSpin Solutions

Open-source and third-party semiconductor IPs could contain undocumented, malicious logic. We challenged engineers everywhere to spot some hardware Trojans.

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Securing Chips from the Ground Up

Sergio Marchese, OneSpin Solutions

Pre-silicon validation and verification of hardware security requirements are crucial, which pushes the need for more robust, efficient design flows.

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Uses And Limitations Of AI In Chip Design

By Raik Brinkmann, OneSpin Solutions

Raik Brinkmann, president and CEO of OneSpin Solutions, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about AI changes and challenges, new opportunities for using existing technology to improve AI, and vice versa. What follows are excerpts of that conversation.

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OneSpin Users Gather In Munich

By Rob van Blommestein, OneSpin Solutions

Even more than most other high-tech companies, EDA vendors rely on their users for many aspects of their success. Of course, customers provide the revenue that fuels the business, but their influence goes far beyond that. Many features in EDA tools, and even entire categories of products, arise from working closely with advanced users. Even before…

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CEO Perspective – Innovation Requires IC Integrity

By Raik Brinkmann, OneSpin Solutions

I’m fascinated with cars, and there is a very famous car maker museum that I visited recently where they gave a thorough rundown of the history of each of their cars from how they are designed, to the materials they used, to the evolution of energy efficiency. It wasn’t until the last exhibit where they talked about the future of automobiles and how AI,…

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High-Level Design and High-Level Verification

Expectations for C++/SystemC Designs Must Be Set Properly

By Dominik Strasser, Vice President of Engineering

Not so long ago, some EDA vendors were painting a very attractive picture of chip design in the then-near future. The idea was that an architectural team would write a single description of the complete system in some high-level language, usually C/C++/SystemC, and that a new class of EDA…

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Chip Security Needs A New Language

SystemVerilog assertions can nicely capture many hardware requirements. However, more is needed for security verification.

By Sven Beyer and Sergio Marchese

Safety- and security-critical systems, such as connected autonomous vehicles, require high-integrity integrated circuits (ICs). Functional correctness and safety are necessary to establish IC integrity, but not sufficient. Security is…

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A Holistic View Of RISC-V Verification

Successful projects entail more than core compliance to the ISA.

By Nicolae Tusinschi, Product Specialist Design Verification, OneSpin

Last month, we discussed the growth of the RISC-V open processor ecosystem, the two main organizations driving it, and the role that OneSpin plays. In addition, we have become very active in the RISC-V community and have more than a dozen technical articles…

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Enabling The RISC-V Ecosystem

Industry initiatives are critical factors for processor family success.

Tom Anderson, Technical Marketing at OneSpin

Earlier this year, OneSpin’s Sven Beyer discussed the emerging RISC-V processor and some of its verification challenges. He stated that “RISC-V is hot and stands at the beginning of what may be a major shift in the industry.” In the few intervening months, it has become even more…

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Intellectual Property: Trust… But Verify

As the supply chain of components and IP expands, so too do the opportunities for adversarial tampering.

By John Hallman, Product Manager Trust & Security

For those around the microelectronic component industry for many years, we have seen quite a transformation of capability, sourcing of the supply chain, and now threats to these devices that drive the technology in our world today.

These…

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Hardware Trojans And The Problem Of Trust In Integrated Circuits

IC development steps are vulnerable to malicious insertions that may compromise system security.

By Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager

Electronic systems are at the core of an ever-increasing number of products and services. From power plants to automobiles, from medical devices to airplanes, from smartphones to home appliances, complex electronic systems enable an unprecedented level…

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IC Integrity Thesis

By Jim Hogan, Vista Ventures

Most of my investments are associated with large changes in the semiconductor industry. These changes create opportunities for new and disruptive technologies. I also look to find solutions that provide a compelling reason to adopt a new technology or approach.  When talking about a new approach, it often takes longer to overcome the status quo.

In this thesis, I…

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Fibonacci And Honey Bees Have Something In Common: A Sweet Spot For Formal

Can assertions enable engineers to design IP that is correct by construction?

By Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager

Time flies and the OneSpin’s Holiday Puzzle tradition has reached its third year. In December 2016, OneSpin challenged engineers everywhere to solve the Einstein riddle using assertions and a formal verification tool. In December 2017, the challenge was to model the harde…

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Formal Verification Of RISC-V Cores

By Sven Beyer, Product Manager Design Verification

RISC-V is hot and stands at the beginning of what may be a major shift in the industry. Even a cursory review of upcoming conferences programs and recent technical articles makes that clear. While it is still early in the evolution of the processor architecture, there is certainly the potential that RISC-V will be a game-changer in the IP and…

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Connectivity Checking Is A Perfect Fit For Formal Verification

By Tom Anderson, Technical Marketing Consultant

Formal verification has traditionally been regarded as an advanced technique for experts to thoroughly verify individual blocks of logic, or perhaps small clusters of blocks. However, if you talk to anyone involved in the field these days, you’ll find that the majority of formal users are running applications (“apps”) targeted for specific…

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Heterogeneous Computing Raises The Bar For Functional Verification

By Raik Brinkmann, CEO and President

If there’s one thing certain in chip development, it’s that every innovation in architecture or semiconductor technology puts more pressure on the functional verification process. The increase in gate count for each new technology node stresses tool capacity. Every step up in complexity makes it harder to find deep, corner-case bugs. The dramatic growth in SoC…

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Integrating Results And Coverage From Simulation And Formal

By Tom Anderson, Technical Marketing Consultant

Not so long ago, formal verification was considered an exotic technology used only by specialists for specific verification challenges such as cache coherency. As chips have grown ceaselessly in size and complexity, the traditional verification method of simulation could not keep pace. The task of generating and running enough tests consumed…

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11 Myths About Formal Verification

By Tom Anderson, Technical Marketing Consultant

Formal verification, which uses mathematical analysis rather than simulation tests, has been available in commercial EDA tools for more than 20 years and in academia much longer. As with many new technologies, initial adoption was slow and limited to companies who had in-house formal experts. This has changed dramatically in the last dozen years or…

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AI Chips Must Get The Floating-Point Math Right

By Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager

Most AI chips and hardware accelerators that power machine learning (ML) and deep learning (DL) applications include floating-point units (FPUs). Algorithms used in neural networks today are often based on operations that use multiplication and addition of floating-point values, which subsequently need to be scaled to different sizes and for…

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Demystifying EDA Support For ISO 26262 Tool Qualification

By Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager

My new, mid-size car is equipped with many advanced driver-assistance systems. To be honest, it’s taking me time to get used to some of them, as, for example, lane-centering assist that seamlessly takes control of my steering wheel. However, I cannot wait to get my hands off a fully autonomous vehicle and be able to take a nap while 7nm chips run…

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Functional Safety: Art Or Science?

By Sergio Marchese, Technical Marketing Manager

Nowadays, most hardware development projects deploy functional verification flows that include UVM-based constrained-random testbenches and formal verification. High design complexity, tough budget constraints, and short time to market are the norm, not the exception. Advanced verification is a necessity for many engineering teams. In our…

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IoT Verification is Harder than it Looks

By Tom Anderson, Technical Marketing Consultant

As has been the case for at least 20 years, functional verification remains the bottleneck for semiconductor development. Many studies have shown that verification consumes 60-70% of a project’s time and resources. As more and more of the chip’s content comes from commercial intellectual property (IP) or reuse from previous generations, the ratio of…

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