If funding is released as expected, the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), a branch of India’s Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, could tape out a 64-bit RISC-V processor in about 30 months, said Biju C. Oommen, a senior manager in C-DAC’s chip design unit. The team consists of about 70 engineers who have designed a wide variety of 8- to 32-bit processors and SoC blocks.
The team has worked on chips for both government and commercial users ranging from an energy metering IC to a digital programmable hearing aid and an automotive controller. C-DAC was created in 1988 to develop supercomputers after the U.S. banned export of the systems to India and expanded to cover a wide variety of high tech projects.
The VLSI team plans to design a quad-core processor running at up to 2 GHz. “This is more complex than any other processor we have designed, we have not taped out anything beyond a 32-bit processor to date,” said Oommen.
The design could deliver variants for a wide range of public and private customers. Targets could include tablets or gateways for the Internet of Things.