Patents Assigned to VLSI Technology, Inc.
  • Patent number: 6093656
    Abstract: A method is provided for eliminating the dishing effect of the chemical mechanical polishing (CMP) process on wide inlaid conductor leads in the layer of dielectric on a semiconductor device. A silicon dioxide dielectric having narrow and wide trenches is first coated with a blanket deposition of conductor material. The conductor material is coated with a photoresist and patterned with a reverse photo image of the trenches. The photoresist is etched leaving the photoresist over the trenches and the conductor material exposed between the trenches. The conductor material is etched removing the conductor material between the trenches and leaving the original thickness of conductor material over the trenches. The remaining photoresist is removed and the conductor material subject to CMP with the original thickness of conductor material acting to prevent dishing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 25, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Xi-Wei Lin
  • Patent number: 6091272
    Abstract: The present invention is directed to a method and apparatus for producing a square wave output signal with a clock circuit that possesses characteristics of low current consumption, relatively tight duty cycle control, and versatility over a wide range of voltages and input signal frequencies down to, and including DC. Exemplary embodiments receive an input signal, and process the input signal into an output square wave signal. A processing of the input signal is achieved using at least one current mirror for controlling a duty cycle of the output square wave signal said at least one current mirror being implemented in part with at least one pair of cascoded transistors. The processing is further achieved with an output stage having at least one inverter operatively connected with a node between the transistors of the at least one pair of cascoded transistors to control switching of the at least one pair of cascoded transistors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Clive Roland Taylor
  • Patent number: 6091594
    Abstract: Protection circuits and methods of protecting a semiconductor device are provided. According to one aspect, the present invention provides a protection circuit adapted to be coupled to a ground connection, pad and power bus of a semiconductor device, the protection circuit includes electrically coupled first and second transistors adapted to be coupled between a pad and a ground connection, the first and second transistors having a common diffusion region coupling the first transistor with the second transistor in a cascode configuration, the first transistor having a gate adapted to be coupled to a power bus to receive a bias voltage, the power bus being substantially electrically isolated from the pad.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Jon R. Williamson, Edward Nowak, Emmanuel de Muizon
  • Patent number: 6092141
    Abstract: A method and arrangement for transferring an indeterminate quantity of data from a target data bus to a requesting data bus. A memory block read command is provided to the target bus by an initiating device coupled to an initiating bus. Successive data segments are repeatedly transferred from the target device into a data buffer which is coupled between the initiating and target buses. The data segments are concurrently transferred from the data buffer to the initiating bus while other data segments are being transferred from the target bus into the data buffer. The transfer is terminated upon receipt of the entire desired data block at the initiating bus, and any read-ahead data remaining in the data buffer after this termination is discarded. The concurrent data transfer is allowed when the memory block read command is not in a delayed completion state, and the command response and requested data are next in the response queue.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Ronald Edwin Lange
  • Patent number: 6091821
    Abstract: A hardware implementation of a hashing algorithm is presented. In a first pipeline stage, a first memory stores input data for the hashing algorithm. Data is selected out of the first memory, for example, using a counter which is reset and incremented by differing values depending upon the round of the algorithm. A second memory stores constants used for the hashing algorithm. Constants are selected out of the second memory, for example, using a counter. An adder adds data from the first memory and a constant from the second memory with a state value selected, for example, using a multiplexer. The result is stored as an intermediate algorithm value in a first pipeline register. In a second pipeline stage a second adder adds one of a plurality of hashing function values to the intermediate algorithm value in the first pipeline register. The result is shifted. A third adder adds the shifted result to one of the plurality of state values and places the result into a second pipeline register.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Mark Leonard Buer
  • Patent number: 6088412
    Abstract: The present invention comprises an elastic buffer to interface digital systems and eliminate sample slippage. The system of the present invention includes a FIFO buffer, a signal classifier, and a FIFO manager. The FIFO buffer receives and stores a plurality of samples as they are received from a transmitting digital system. The plurality of samples comprise a received digital signal and are stored on a first in first out basis. The signal classifier is coupled to the FIFO buffer. The signal classifier is adapted to identify non-essential samples among the plurality of samples stored in the FIFO buffer. The FIFO manager is coupled to the FIFO buffer and the signal classifier. The FIFO manager is adapted to remove the non-essential samples identified by the signal classifier, or, insert additional non-essential samples into the plurality of samples stored within the FIFO buffer. When the FIFO buffer is in an underrunning condition, the additional non-essential samples are inserted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Stephan Ott
  • Patent number: 6088751
    Abstract: The present invention comprises a computer system with a reconfigurable bus priority arbitration system. The computer system of the present invention includes a master device, a slave device, an arbiter and a reconfigurable bus priority arbitration system, all coupled to a bus. The reconfigurable arbitration system determines said master device's relative priority for bus accesses and is capable of implementing a plurality of linked arbitration priority schemes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Kenneth Jaramillo
  • Patent number: 6087214
    Abstract: A semiconductor structure uses a shallow trench isolation (STI) region to realize a capacitor trench of a reduced size. Consistent with one embodiment of fabricating a memory cell, the invention includes selectively removing portions of a substrate using a patterned mask to form a capacitor trench and an isolation trench at least partially around the capacitor trench. An oxide is formed in the isolation trench and the capacitor trench and the oxide so selectively removed in the capacitor trench. Portions of the substrate defining the base and sidewalls of the capacitor trench are then doped and a capacitor dielectric is formed in the capacitor trench, leaving a portion of the trench unfilled. A polysilicon layer is formed it the unfilled portion of the capacitor trench and over the capacitor dielectric to form a plate of the storage capacitor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: James A. Cunningham
  • Patent number: 6084916
    Abstract: The present invention comprises a sample rate conversion system for eliminating sample rate slippage. The system of the present invention includes a first sample rate conversion circuit and a second sample rate conversion circuit. The first sample rate conversion circuit is adapted to multiply a sample rate frequency by a factor "N", producing a first converted sample rate frequency. The a second sample rate conversion circuit is adapted to divide the first converted sample rate frequency by a factor of "M", producing a second converted sample rate frequency. The sample rate frequency is used to encode an input signal, producing an encoded signal. The second converted sample rate frequency is used to decode the encoded signal, producing an output signal. The second converted sample rate frequency and the values of N and M are adjusted such that the input signal is substantially the same as the output signal, eliminating sample rate slippage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Stefan Ott
  • Patent number: 6085307
    Abstract: A multiple processor circuit arrangement utilizes a master processor which controls the operational state of a slave processor by programming internal control registers on the slave processor. In addition, a stack-based processor utilizes a stack cache for accelerating stack access operations and thereby accelerating the overall performance of the processor. When the stack-based processor is utilized as a slave processor in the aforementioned master/slave multi-processor computer system the slave processor is optimized to process platform-independent program code such as Java bytecodes, thereby permitting fast and efficient execution of both program code native to the master processor as well as platform-independent program code that is in effect native to the slave processor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 1996
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: David Ross Evoy, Paul S. Levy
  • Patent number: 6084305
    Abstract: A semiconductor device structure and method for producing a shaped etch-front during an etching process. In one embodiment, the present invention is comprised of a first layer of material which is disposed above a contact layer. In this embodiment, the first layer of material has a first etch rate. Next, the present invention deposits a second layer of material above at least a portion of the first layer of material. The second layer of material has a second etch rate which is faster than the first etch rate. Additionally, in the present invention, the first layer of material and the second layer of material have a sloped interfacial topography. The sloped interfacial topography of the present invention creates shaped etch-front during the etching of an opening extending through the first layer of material and the second layer of material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Ian Robert Harvey
  • Patent number: 6084464
    Abstract: An-on-chip decoupling capacitor system for an integrated circuit comprises parallel capacitive and fusible paths between power and ground. The capacitive path includes a field-effect-transistor based capacitor and another "capacitive-path" transistor in series with the capacitor. The fusible path includes an electromigratable fuse and a "fusible-path" transistor in series with the fuse. The capacitive-path transistor, which is controlled by the voltage at a "fusible-path" node between the fuse and the fusible-path transistor, is on during normal operation. The fusible-path transistor, which is controlled by the voltage at a "capacitive-path" node between the capacitor and the capacitive-path transistor, is off during normal operation. During normal operation, the capacitor provides local voltage regulation by sinking charge during voltage surges and supply charge during voltage drops.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 1999
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc
    Inventor: Xi-Wei Lin
  • Patent number: 6081859
    Abstract: The present invention comprises a smart retry system for a PCI (peripheral component interconnect) agent in a PCI bus system. The system of the present invention includes an initiator PCI agent, a retry identification register, and a completion counter. The initiator PCI agent is adapted to couple to a PCI bus and communicate with a target PCI agent via the PCI bus by initiating a data transaction. The retry identification register is coupled to the initiator PCI agent. The retry identification register is adapted to store a target address and a transaction type corresponding to the target PCI agent when the target PCI agent issues a retry to the initiator PCI agent. The completion counter is coupled to the initiator PCI agent and is adapted to measure a latency period of the target PCI agent.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Gabriel Roland Munguia
  • Patent number: 6080608
    Abstract: A heat sink is formed on a bonded semiconductor on insulator (SOI) wafer. A trench is formed which extends from a top of the bonded SOI wafer through an isolation region of the bonded SOI wafer to a base of the bonded SOI wafer. The base of the bonded SOI wafer is located below the isolation region of the bonded SOI wafer. A conductive pillar is formed in the trench. The conductive pillar extends from the top of the bonded SOI wafer through the isolation region of the bonded SOI wafer and is physically in contact with but electrically insulated from the base of the bonded SOI wafer. In the preferred embodiment, the conductive pillar is formed of doped polysilicon. The doped polysilicon is of a conductivity type which is different than the conductivity type of the base. Out-diffusion from the doped polysilicon forms a region within the base which electrically insulates the conductive pillar from the base.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 6, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Edward D. Nowak
  • Patent number: 6080677
    Abstract: An isolation structure on an integrated circuit is formed using a shallow trench isolation process. A layer of buffer oxide is formed on a substrate. A layer of nitride is formed on the layer of buffer oxide. The layer of nitride and the layer of buffer oxide are patterned to form a trench area. The substrate including the trench area is subjected to a plasma comprising H.sub.2 O vapor, and a gaseous fluorocarbon or a fluorinated hydrocarbon gas to clean impurities on the trench area. The substrate is etched to form a trench within the trench area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Calvin Gabriel, Ian Robert Harvey, Linda Leard
  • Patent number: 6077151
    Abstract: The temperature of a wafer is controlled during a chemical mechanical polishing process. Fluid containment is provided on a wafer backing plate in contact with the wafer during the chemical mechanical polishing process. Transportation of fluid is provided to and from the fluid containment during the chemical mechanical polishing process. Temperature of the fluid is controlled in order to control temperature on the wafer during the chemical mechanical polishing process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 17, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Andrew J. Black, Landon Vines
  • Patent number: 6077762
    Abstract: Disclosed is a method for making reliable interconnect structures on a semiconductor substrate having a first dielectric layer. The method includes plasma patterning a first metallization layer that lies over the first dielectric layer. Forming a second dielectric layer over the first metallization layer and the first dielectric layer. Forming a plurality of tungsten plugs in the second dielectric layer, such that each of the plurality of tungsten plugs are in electrical contact with the first metallization layer. Plasma patterning a second metallization layer over the second dielectric layer and the plurality of tungsten plugs, such that at least a gap over at least one of the tungsten plugs is not covered by the second metallization layer and a positive charge is built-up on at least part of the second metallization layer. The method further includes contacting the second metallization layer with a conductive liquid that is electrically grounded.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Victor C. Liang, Subhas Bothra, Harlan Lee Sur, Jr.
  • Patent number: 6078937
    Abstract: The present invention provides for a circuit comprising: an input operable to receive a bit pattern; a shifter configured to selectively shift the bit pattern; a data output operable to output the bit pattern; and a sign extension operator coupled with the data output and operable to provide a sign extension signal thereto. The present invention additionally discloses a barrel shifter and a method for manipulating a bit pattern.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 1996
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Christophe Vatinel
  • Patent number: 6076125
    Abstract: An apparatus for and a method of arbitrating a stream of access requests over multiple outputs. In one embodiment, the apparatus is implemented with D*[W+(N+1)log.sub.2 D] storage elements, where D is a maximum number of outstanding requests allowed by an issuing agent, N is a number of different request types, and W is a width of access requests measured in bits. The present embodiment comprises a main queue, an input address selection circuit coupled to the main queue for selecting storage locations to receive a stream of access requests, and a plurality of output address selection circuits coupled to the main queue for selecting storage locations to be read. Significantly, the input address selection circuit includes an input address list pointing to vacant storage locations in the main queue, and the input address list is updated each time an access request is stored in, or read out from, the main queue.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 9, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Vishal Anand
  • Patent number: 6074921
    Abstract: A technique for self-aligned processing of semiconductor device features is disclosed. This technique includes the formation of a semiconductor device with features extending from the plane of a semiconductor substrate. The features may include polysilicon transistor gates. A coating is deposited on the features and substrate. Chemical mechanical polishing is performed to remove a portion of the coating to expose a surface of the features without lithographic processing. In one form, the exposed surface of the feature is defined by a polysilicon member, and the polysilicon member is at least partially selectively removed and replaced with a metal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2000
    Assignee: VLSI Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Xi-Wei Lin