Cutting Development Costs – A non-standard ESD solution for 15V pins


Internal development often costs more than working with Sofics.

In one example, the ESD protection for a certain process had been worked out and was readily available to IC and I/O design teams. However, a new product requirement introduced 15V pins into the 5V low-voltage process. The design team faced a choice: develop a custom solution, or get a solution from Sofics.

Leveraging the portability of our clamps, Sofics delivered a 15V clamp in only 2 weeks from project start to delivery, without having to go through test silicon. As the process and design window of the pin were unknown, some additional structures were added on a test shuttle, but these turned out to be redundant: the 15V clamp passed the 6kV HBM specification on the first try.

Sofics’ compensation for the project and its IP was a fraction of what the self-development alternative would have cost. It eliminated the need for expensive design and layout time and resources, additional shuttle run(s), out-of-house ESD testing, and a delayed time-to-market. It also removed the uncertainty of the path to a working solution.