ITRI, AITA, and UCLA CHIPS to Partner on AI Chip Development

Article By : Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI)

The move is expected to add depth to cooperation between Taiwan and the US in supply chains and launch new business opportunities for AI chips.

The Department of Industrial Technology (DoIT) of the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) is supporting the commencement of cooperation between Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), the AI on Chip Taiwan Alliance (AITA), and the UCLA Center for Heterogeneous Integration and Performance Scaling (CHIPS). The parties signed the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Heterogeneous Integration Advanced Packaging, hoping to utilize Taiwan’s AIoT advantages and the experience of the US in high performance computing to jointly strengthen complementary forward-looking semiconductor technology R&D. This is expected to add depth to cooperation between Taiwan and the US in supply chains and launch new business opportunities for AI chips.

DoIT Science and Technology Advisor Xian-Yi Lin stated that the DoIT supports ITRI, ATIA, and UCLA CHIPS in inking a collaborative agreement, which will help the parties quickly grasp international system specification trends in the areas of design, manufacturing and packaging. The parties will complement each other in working to create the next generation of innovative AI technologies and services, forging reliable partnerships.

ITRI, AITA, and UCLA CHIPS signed an MOU on September 14 to foster cooperation on AI chip development.

Dr. Chih-I Wu, ITRI Vice President and General Director of the Electronic and Optoelectronic System Research Laboratories, commented that die-to-die (D2D) interconnection bandwidth plays a vital role in heterogeneous integration. ITRI, he said, has over the years created a solid foundation in cultivating packaging technology, and the specifications of the patented high speed communications interface developed under the AI on Chip initiative already surpass those of major international manufacturers. In the future, these technologies will be used in innovative applications that require high bandwidth, such as 8K high-resolution images and 5G communications.

Dr. Wu emphasized that the alliance with UCLA CHIPS offers two main advantages: First, through the use of the UCLA CHIPS platform, Taiwan’s D2D technology will be able to be promoted internationally. Second, UCLA CHIPS has the latest heterogeneous integration technology. This will help connect international system integration requirements with Taiwan’s semiconductor ecosystem. ITRI’s pilot line will verify the functionality of its product prototypes, and further orders for products can be forwarded to Taiwan’s semiconductor manufacturers, assisting the industry in solidifying links with international contacts.

“Our collaboration with ITRI is a centerpiece of our international collaboration in the area of heterogeneous integration and packaging for high performance computing and artificial intelligence,” said UCLA CHIPS Center Director Prof. Subramanian S. Iyer. “We are grateful for the close technical collaboration with ITRI engineers who bring incredible innovation and a wealth of experience to our collaboration. The feedback and suggestions we get from ITRI have had a very positive and meaningful impact on our research direction, execution and most importantly on the education of our students who will lead this work in the years to come. We hope that this interaction with UCLA CHIPS is just as beneficial for ITRI as well.”

AITA Chairman Nicky Lu, also CEO of Etron Technology Inc., stated that AITA connects the resources of Taiwan’s semiconductor-related industries with those of the government and academia and is strengthening cooperative relationships with global innovators. Since its inception in 2019, AITA now has over 125 member companies, working to develop AI chip technology for AIoT system applications. This cooperation with UCLA CHIPS offers opportunities in the development of international specifications for heterogeneous integration, and provides a window for technology promotion and exchanges. Dr. Lu said that Taiwan’s mature industry chain and abundant experience in chip production, in conjunction with UCLA’s resources, will pave the way for Taiwan manufacturers to take the lead in creating a strategic blueprint and accelerating development for AI chips.

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