System-on-Chip Design

From simple sequence controllers for our smart sensor systems to highly complex microcontroller-based System-on-Chip (SoC) solutions, we offer a comprehensive portfolio of solutions in the field of digital circuit technology.

Our expertise includes both FPGA-based developments and customer-specific ASIC solutions in a semiconductor technology selected for the respective application. The spectrum of services we offer ranges from concept and feasibility studies to the creation of complete designs, design support at the customer's site, and the assumption of the complete supply chain management.

For our SoC solutions and smart sensor systems, the System-On-Chip Design competence conducts research and development on the following topics, among others:

  • Digital Signal Processing
  • sequence controllers
  • Communication interfaces (I2C, SPI etc.)
  • Microcontroller based SoC (RISC-V, ARM, etc.)
  • Functional safety and cyber security for critical applications in the aerospace, automotive and industrial sectors
  • Efficient hardware for inference and training of neural networks

Logo of the RISC-V Fundation
© RISC-V Fundation
We use RISC-V for our SoC-solutions
RISC-V core for safety and security applications
RISC-V core for safety and security applications

One focus in the last years was the development of an own implementation of the RISC-V Instruction Set Architecture (ISA ) called AIRISC. The focus here was on the use in embedded systems, i.e. a resource-saving but nevertheless efficient variant. In the current version the instruction set RV32IMC is supported. Extensions for floating point operations (F) as well as atomic operations (A) are currently under development and will be available soon. For detailed information regarding the specified RISC-V ISA extensions see: More information

In addition to the implementation of the standard, the System-On-Chip Design competence is researching specific extensions to the instruction set, including the area of artificial intelligence. This makes AIRISC ideally suited as a computational platform for AIfES, the software framework for artificial intelligence on embedded systems, which was also developed at Fraunhofer IMS.

Another focus of our SoC solutions for smart sensor systems is the area of functional safety as well as cyber security. In the area of functional security, we research and develop hardware structures for the prevention and detection of errors in behaviour of our SoC solutions, such as the implementation of RISC-V based lockstep processors.

So-called physically unclonable functions (PUFs) developed at Fraunhofer IMS serve as the basis for securing our SoC solutions and smart sensor systems against cyberattacks. These PUFs serve as cryptographic keys for encrypting and decrypting software and/or data on our SoC solutions and smart sensor systems.

AIRISC - RISC-V-based 32-Bit-processor@embedded world 2022

Our colleague Alexander Utz explains our latest AI acceleration for the analysis of sensor data using ECG data as an example.

Click here to watch the video with subtitles on YouTube.  

High Precision Readout IC for Accelerometers

High Resolution Delay Measurement in your ASIC

AIRISC - RISC-V Cores for Smart Embedded Sensing

Highly configurable and customizable RISC-V processor systems for a wide range of embedded AI applications.

Our technologies - Innovations for your products

Sensor Frontends

These first signal processing stages in sensor systems amplify, filter and convert sensor signals into digital form

Mixed Signal Design

Complex electronic functions are increasingly realized through the closely interlocked design of analog and digital circuits

High Temperature Electronics

For applications with up to 300°C ambient temperature a special technology is available at Fraunhofer IMS

Integrated Sensors

Integrated sensors can be incorporated directly into a circuit design and enable miniaturized, efficient sensor systems

Neural Networks

Neural networks often allow highly efficient signal analysis directly at the location of the sensor system

"eHarsh Seminar"

Intelligent control of processes in the field of Industry 4.0 is presented by the ILT in your online seminar eHarsh

Our technology areas - Our technologies for your development

Integrated Sensor Systems

Covers all electronic components for sensor signal conditioning and readout.

Optical Systems

Comprises 3D-Sensors, High-Speed-Imaging, detection of extreme low light as well as scientific imaging.

Wireless and Transponder Systems

Incorporates the wireless acquisition of sensor and ID-data even in passive systems.


Smart Sensor Systems

Here you can get back to the overview page of the core competence Smart Sensor Systems (SSS).