Virage Logic's RFID NVM Solution Being Developed on SMIC's 180nm LL Process

Virage Logic Corporation (NASDAQ:VIRL), the semiconductor industry's trusted IP partner, and Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation ("SMIC"; NYSE: SMI and SEHK: 0981.HK) today announced a radio-frequency identification (RFID) optimized version of Virage Logic's AEON MTP NVM solution. The RFID-optimized NVM solution, ideal for use in passive tags, is being developed on SMIC's 180-nanometer (nm) low leakage (LL) process, which provides enhanced RF performance.

Virage Logic's AEON/MTP RFID is based on a single-poly standard logic CMOS process. This architecture eliminates costly manufacturing steps normally involved with floating-gate memory, while reducing the engineering effort and associated costs of integrating NVM into RFID designs. Its multi-time programmability provides AEON with significant flexibility and testability advantages over one-time programmable (OTP) NVM. AEON's RFID architecture is targeted at ultra-low power applications, specifically EPC Gen2 and ISO15693 passive RFID tags, because it maximizes tag range.

AEON/MTP RFID supports 100,000 write-erase cycles and bit counts up to 4K bits, giving RF system architects the freedom to increase the feature sets and functionality of end products. With read operation down to 1.0V, AEON NVM lowers the demand on the passive power generation circuitry and allows more reliable reads which provides an ideal solution for ultra-low-power applications such as RFID tags.

"We are pleased to partner with Virage Logic to bring a world-class RFID solution to our mutual customers," said Max Liu, vice president of design services at SMIC. "As the industry's leading embedded NVM provider, Virage Logic's AEON product has already been integrated and shipped in hundreds of millions of RFID tags worldwide. The combination of SMIC's process technology and RFID specific capabilities together with Virage Logic's low power, multi-programmable AEON NVM IP brings best-in-class performance and capability to design engineers in worldwide markets."

"By developing our AEON/MTP NVM on SMIC's 180nm low-leakage process technology, it will be optimized for ultra-low-power RF applications to provide our mutual customers with a superior IP solution for their RFID applications," said Virage Logic's Dr. Yankin Tanurhan, vice president and general manager, NVM Solutions. "Virage Logic's embedded NVM technology has already been adopted by several leading RFID manufacturers and we are pleased to work with SMIC to develop a locally available RFID solution for the rapidly expanding China market."

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