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Home > Resources > Company Case About Treaty on Intellectual Property in Respect of Integrated Circuits

Treaty on Intellectual Property in Respect of Integrated Circuits

 Company Resources About Treaty on Intellectual Property in Respect of Integrated Circuits

What are integrated circuits?

An integrated circuit is a subset of electronic engineering that is made up of electronic components commonly known as microchips. They are also described as miniaturized electronic components used in microprocessor fabrication and composed of many electronic components forming a single unit.

Integrated circuits are commonly made up of 3 layers of electronics namely:

  • Wafer: These are thin slices of semiconductors, for example, crystalline silicon (c-Si), and are used for the fabrication of integrated circuits. They are also the foundation of the chip where the electronic components are integrated upon.
  • The electronic components: These are etched onto semiconductors and their primary functionalities are to regulate and manage the electrical signals that flow on the chip. They are categorized into active components, such as transistors and diodes, and passive components, such as capacitors and resistors.
  • Insulators: These are materials that do not allow heat or electricity to pass through.
  • Integrated Circuit Protector (ICP): This is a device installed to protect the integrated circuit from overcurrent. Overcurrent is described as an excess amount of electricity that passes through the conductor, and which can cause excess heat generation fire and damage to the device. ICPs can quickly shut off the device if an overcurrent occurs, which protects the device.
  • Advantages of Utilizing ICT

  • Footprint: ICT helps innovators to manufacture smaller-sized products that can achieve more complex functionalities.
  • Cost: Due to their small size, ICT allows businesses to cut down on manufacturing costs on-chip fabrication.
  • Heterogeneous integration: An integrated circuit can have its layers built in different matters, as well as being built on different types of wafers. This allows for the optimization of the manufacturing process to a much greater degree than if they are built on a single wafer. In addition, a single component that is incompatible during manufacturing can be combined to become functional in a three-dimensional IC.
  • Shorter interconnect: The average length of wires in ICT products is reduced, meaning that performance attributes such as circuit delay might be improved.
  • Power: In addition to shorter circuit delays, shorter wires mean reduced power consumption. Consequently, this results in lower power budgets, lower heat generation, extended battery life, and lower cost of operations.
  • Design: The way ICTs are shaped allows greater versatility and more possibilities in terms of the product’s visual design.
  • Circuit security: ICT integration can achieve security through obscurity. The way ICT is stacked complicates malicious attempts to reverse engineer the circuitry. The circuits can be divided in such a way as to hide the function of each layer. Furthermore, ICT integration allows the ability to install system-monitor-like features in the circuit’s different layers. This makes it possible to implement a manner of hardware-firewall to monitor the device during its runtime. The intention of this is to protect the whole electronic system against malevolent run-time attacks as well as malicious hardware modifications.
  • Bandwidth: ICT integration allows large numbers of vertical vias between the circuit’s layer. A Via is a pathway or an electrical connection between layers in an integrated circuit. This allows the ability for wide bandwidth buses to be built between functional blocks in different layers. An arrangement such as this allows the buses to alleviate memory wall problems.