ZMDI Licenses Sofics’ ESD Solutions

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ZMDI Licenses Sofics® PowerQubic® ESD Clamps to Meet Automotive EMC Requirements on 0.18um 24V Chips

Technology Outperforms Benchmarks in Two Evaluations; Enhances Device Reliability, Reduces Cost

GISTEL, BELGIUM (January 22, 2013) –Sofics® bvba ( of Gistel has been selected by ZMDI ( of Dresden, Germany to develop a library of PowerQubic® on-chip electrostatic discharge and electrical overstress (ESD/EOS) clamps for devices fabricated in a TSMC 0.18um gen II BCD (bipolar-CMOS-DMOS) process with 24V interfaces.

After conducting two evaluations of Sofics PowerQubic® technology prior to this agreement, to test the technology’s potential for enhancing device reliability while holding down manufacturing costs, ZMDI decided to work closely with Sofics on PowerQubic ESD/EOS protection for their latest devices.

Sofics is a leading provider of ESD solutions for integrated circuits. ZMDI is a major supplier of application-specific ICs for automotive and industrial electronics, medical technology, and infrared interfaces, including heavy-duty mixed analog and digital ICs. Under the licensing agreement Sofics will adapt PowerQubic technology to ZMDI’s requirements, which include meeting IEC electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) standards for ESD immunity in automotive electronics.

“ZMDI needs the best available ESD/EOS protection for our products. Sofics’ PowerQubic clamps were superior in the EMC test, as well as in parameters such as meeting flexible clamping voltage specifications”

Frank Shulze, Business Line Manager, Sensing and Automotive, ZMDI

“Automotive electronics are exposed to high levels of electrical stress, so ZMDI needs the best available ESD/EOS protection for our products,” said Frank Shulze, Business Line Manager, Sensing and Automotive. “We ran evaluations of several ESD solutions for chips fabricated in a 0.25um BCD process. PowerQubic clamps were superior in the EMC test, as well as in parameters such as meeting flexible clamping voltage specifications.

“We selected Sofics to provide ESD/EOS protection for a new line of 0.18um devices, at a lower cost than building the clamps from scratch.”

Frank Shulze, Business Line Manager, Sensing and Automotive, ZMDI

According to Koen Verhaege, Sofics CEO, PowerQubic is a proven technology that has already been implemented in several processes and offers economic advantages as well.

“Because PowerQubic does not require process changes, licensees can actually lower their overall cost by opting for our advanced technology. “We are very pleased that ZMDI has chosen our technology for their new 24Vcompatible devices.”

PowerQubic incorporates proprietary clamps that dissipate more energy per area than any other device, allowing it to deliver the highest level of ESD/EOS protection available for highvoltage ICs. PowerQubic (PQ) and TakeCharge® (TC) ESD/EOS technologies from Sofics are proven across multiple applications, processes, and foundries. TSMC-9000 quality approval for both PQ and TC has been granted or is pending in several processes, and both technologies have proven to be readily portable among various foundries and processes.

About ZMDI

Zentrum Mikroelektronik Dresden AG (ZMDI) is a global supplier of analog and mixed-signal semiconductors solutions for automotive, industrial, medical, mobile sensing, information technology and consumer applications. These solutions enable our customers to create the most energy-efficient products in power management, lighting and sensors. For over 50 years ZMDI has been globally headquartered in Dresden, Germany. With over 320 employees worldwide ZMDI serves its customers with sales offices and design centers throughout Germany, Italy, Bulgaria, France, United Kingdom, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Taiwan and the United States.

About Sofics

Sofics ( focuses on product development, licensing, engineering tools and design services for on-chip device- and system-level protection and reliability. Sofics is an independent IP provider, formerly known as Sarnoff Europe.

Sofics® and the Sofics logo are registered trademarks of Sofics BV.

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