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United Memories patents to go under the hammer

Posted: 20 Aug 2010     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:semiconductor patents  intellectual property  DRAM circuitry 

United Memories' semiconductor patents will go under the hammer later this year grouped in three lots. ICAP Ocean Tomo, ICAP plc's intellectual property brokerage division, will auction the patents, in Napa, U.S on November 11. One lot of patents consists of charge-sharing techniques for low-power IC devices. Another involves test interfaces for high-speed DRAM circuitry, while the third is related to IC memory testing and simultaneous function DRAM technique and hidden refresh for DRAM circuits.

IBM, AT&T, Hitachi, Texas Instruments, HP, Samsung, California Institute of Technology, Toshiba, Sanyo, and the National Semiconductor Corp. are among those that have cited the intellectual property assets.

The first lot consist of four patents for techniques that allow designers to ensure a more efficient charge-sharing and signal level generation of desired values, enable charge recycle using two additional circuit blocks, ensure constant voltage levels and flexible multiplexing, and allow charge-sharing between two or more circuits using a shorting transistor.

The second lot of patents calls for the use of a single DRAM cache and smaller tag than what is called for in conventional techniques to ensure 100 per cent memory system availability. It hides refresh cycles required by DRAM circuits, leading to a control interface similar to those in more expensive and lower storage capacity SRAM circuits.

The third lot of four U.S-issued patents and two non-US patent ones aims to boost processor speed by using IC memory testing and simultaneous function DRAM techniques. Multiple commands can be executed on a memory array on a single clock cycle, similar to embedded memory arrays or speciality DRAMs and Flash memories.

"These portfolios should be of interest to IC design companies, IC manufacturers, hardware manufacturers, consumer electronics companies, and any other entities that produce, distribute, or market devices that incorporate semiconductors," ICAP Ocean Tomo CEO Dean Becker said. Inventor Michael Parris said the patents "enable semiconductor memory to move to the next level in terms of speed, power, and cost savings."

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