China unveils indigenous chiplet interface to reach self-reliance amid US containment

Jingyue Hsiao, DIGITIMES Asia, Taipei 0

Credit: AFP

As China is getting isolated as a result of the US technological containment, China has come up with an indigenous interconnected interface for chiplet as Moore's law seems to approach its limits.

According to Chinese media Cailianshe, China Chiplet League, collaborating with China-based system integrators, IP providers, and packaging, testing, and assembling manufacturers, unveiled China's indigenous Chiplet Interconnect Interface Standard - ACC 1.0 (Advanced Cost-driven Chiplet Interface 1.0), aiming to coordinate Chinese suppliers in the packaging, testing, and assembly industry, and IC substrate manufacturers to achieve cost-control and business feasibility.

According to a statement from China-based Institute for Interdisciplinary Information Core Technology, the semiconductor ecosystem in China is still in the developmental stage and may remain in the catch-up phase under the current international cirsumstances. The statement added that to ensure a breakthrough in the technology, China-based suppliers from upstream to downstream have to collaborate to establish an ecosystem, with downstream demands driving upstream investments to achieve economies of scale in mass production, thereby creating a virtuous cycle.

As Moore's law approaches the physical limitations, chiplet is seen as an alternative way for future advanced semiconductor manufacturing and packaging to keep improving chip performance. Instead of designing and manufacturing an entire microchip as a single unit, the chiplet allows for the modular design and assembly of microchips by combining multiple chips together, offering flexibility, faster time-to-market, and reduced manufacturing costs.

The Chinese semiconductor industry is also eyeing chiplet to achieve better performance ofchips, especially when the Chinese semiconductor ecosystem faces containment from the US and its allies. The China Chiplet League was founded in September 2020, when the US imposed export ban against China-based SMIC.

Outside of China, Intel, TSMC, Microsoft, Samsung Electronics, Qualcomm, AMD, and ASE formed the Universal Chiplet Interconnect Express alliance to develop the chiplet ecosystem. According to Omdia, the chiplet market is expected to reach US$57 billion by 2035.