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OpenLane 2 boost for custom open source chip design

OpenLane 2 boost for custom open source chip design

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty



Efabless has releases version 2 of the OpenLane open source electronic design automation tools that allows the integration of proprietary tools, a key barrier to adoption.

For OpenLane 2, eFabless has redesigned the EDA infrastructure to allow chip designers and tool developers to create custom flows, including highly specialized steps that were previously not possible.

OpenLane is a Python-based infrastructure designed for implementing Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) and has been used since 2020. It integrates a range of development tools including Yosys, OpenROAD, Magic, and KLayout, abstracting the complex processes of silicon design into tangible and manageable steps.

This has made it the development backbone for numerous projects, including most projects on the Open MPW and chipIgnite shuttles. 

OpenLane 2 adds a robust Python-based infrastructure where users can construct fully customizable flows incorporating both existing and novel steps using proprietary or open-source tools. 

The infrastructure supports the creation of multiple, customizable flows, whether integrating custom steps or using advanced options for flow control. There is now complete configuration validation, more graceful failure handling, and the flexibility to resume flows from specific stages – enhancing productivity and reducing time to implementation.

With OpenLane 2, users can write their own steps in Python, create complex flows with decision-making capabilities, and even experiment within Python Notebooks. This level of customization was previously not possible.

“OpenLane 2 is a testament to our commitment to innovation and collaboration in the open-source silicon space. By offering a silicon development infrastructure that supports highly customizable flows, we’re not just meeting the current needs of the industry – we’re anticipating its future directions,” said Mohamed Shalan, Head of the EDA/IC Design Team at Efabless.

OpenLane 2 is now available and download instructions can be found at efabless.com/openlane

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