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A ceramic multi-chip module containing four POWER5 processor dies (center) and four 36 MB L3 cache dies (periphery).
A ceramic multi-chip module containing four POWER5 processor dies (center) and four 36 MB L3 cache dies (periphery).

A multi-chip module (MCM) is generically an electronic assembly (such as a package with a number of conductor terminals or "pins") where multiple integrated circuits (ICs or "chips"), semiconductor dies and/or other discrete components are integrated, usually onto a unifying substrate, so that in use it can be treated as if it were a larger IC.[1] Other terms for MCM packaging include "Heterogeneous integration" or "Hybrid Integrated Circuit".[2] The advantage of using MCM packaging is it allows a manufacturer to use multiple components for modularity and/or to improve yields over a conventional monolithic IC approach.

Overview

Multi-chip modules come in a variety of forms depending on the complexity and development philosophies of their designers. These can range from using pre-packaged ICs on a small printed circuit board (PCB) meant to mimic the package footprint of an existing chip package to fully custom chip packages integrating many chip dies on a high density interconnection (HDI) substrate. The final assembled MCM substrate may be done in one of the following ways:

The ICs that make up the MCM package may be:

The PCB that interconnects the ICs is known as an interposer. This is often either organic or is made of silicon (as in High Bandwidth Memory)[5] Both have their advantages and limitations. Using interposers to connect several ICs instead of connecting several monolithic ICs in separate packages reduces the power needed to transmit signals between ICs, increases the amount of transmission channels, and reduces delays caused by resistance/capacitance (RC delays).[6] However, communication between chiplets consumes more power and has higher latency than components in monolithic ICs.[7]

Chip stack MCMs

Wireless NoC on 3D integrated circuit
Wireless NoC on 3D integrated circuit

A relatively new development in MCM technology is the so-called "chip-stack" package.[8] Certain ICs, memories in particular, have very similar or identical pinouts when used multiple times within systems. A carefully designed substrate can allow these dies to be stacked in a vertical configuration making the resultant MCM's footprint much smaller (albeit at the cost of a thicker or taller chip). Since area is more often at a premium in miniature electronics designs, the chip-stack is an attractive option in many applications such as cell phones and personal digital assistants (PDAs). With the use of a 3D integrated circuit and a thinning process, as many as ten dies can be stacked to create a high capacity SD memory card.[9] This technique can also be used for High Bandwidth Memory.

The possible way to increasing the performance of data transfer in the Chip stack is use Wireless Networks on Chip (WiNoC).[10]

Examples of multi-chip packages

3D multi-chip modules

Main articles: 3D integrated circuit and Package on package

See also

References

  1. ^ Rao Tummala, Solid State Technology. “SoC vs. MCM vs SiP vs. SoP.” Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  2. ^ Don Scansen, EE Times "Chiplets: A Short History Retrieved 26 April, 2021
  3. ^ Samuel K. Moore, IEEE Spectrum "Intel's View of the Chiplet Revolution" Retrieved 26 April, 2021
  4. ^ Semi Engineering "Chiplets" Retrieved 26 April, 2021
  5. ^ https://semiengineering.com/knowledge_centers/packaging/advanced-packaging/2-5d-ic/
  6. ^ "Interposers".
  7. ^ Dr. Ian Cutress, AnandTech "Intel Moving to Chiplets: 'Client 2.0' for 7nm"
  8. ^ Jon Worrel (15 April 2012). "Intel migrates to desktop Multi-Chip Modules (MCMs) with 14nm Broadwell". Fudzilla.
  9. ^ Richard Chirgwin, The Register. “Memory vendors pile on '3D' stacking standard.” April 2, 2013. February 5, 2016.
  10. ^ Slyusar V. I., Slyusar D.V. Pyramidal design of nanoantennas array. // VIII International Conference on Antenna Theory and Techniques (ICATT’11). - Kyiv, Ukraine. - National Technical University of Ukraine “Kyiv Polytechnic Institute”. - September 20–23, 2011. - Pp. 140 - 142. [1]
  11. ^ Ghoshal, U.; Van Duzer, T. (1992). "High-performance MCM interconnection circuits and fluxoelectronics". Proceedings 1992 IEEE Multi-Chip Module Conference MCMC-92. pp. 175–178. doi:10.1109/MCMC.1992.201478. ISBN 0-8186-2725-5. S2CID 109329843.
  12. ^ Burns, M. J.; Char, K.; Cole, B. F.; Ruby, W. S.; Sachtjen, S. A. (1993). "Multichip module using multilayer YBa2Cu3O7−δinterconnects". Applied Physics Letters. 62 (12): 1435–1437. Bibcode:1993ApPhL..62.1435B. doi:10.1063/1.108652.
  13. ^ Satoru Iwata, Iwata Asks. “Changes in Television.” Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  14. ^ Shimpi, Anand Lal. "VIA's QuadCore: Nano Gets Bigger". www.anandtech.com. Retrieved 2020-04-10.
  15. ^ "MCP (Multichip Package) | Samsung Semiconductor". www.samsung.com.
  16. ^ "NAND based MCP | Samsung Memory Link". samsung.com.
  17. ^ "e-MMC based MCP | Samsung Memory Link". samsung.com.
  18. ^ Cutress, Ian. "The AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X and 1920X Review: CPUs on Steroids". www.anandtech.com. Retrieved 2020-04-10.
  19. ^ Lilly, Paul (2019-12-17). "AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3960X, 3970X Meet Scalpel For Zen 2 Delidding Operation". HotHardware. Retrieved 2020-04-10.
  20. ^ Cutress, Ian. "AMD Zen 2 Microarchitecture Analysis: Ryzen 3000 and EPYC Rome". www.anandtech.com. Retrieved 2020-04-10.