Enhancement to a SPICE kernel (i.e., SPICE 3F5, XSPICE) is an unequivocally
important aspect in providing a truly robust analog and mixed-signal
simulator. SPICE kernels that have not been significantly modified often
fall short on tough design such as switch mode circuitry, oscillator,
time-varying control loop and large-scale topologies. It requires several
years to successfully augment SPICE technology, for which Intusoft continues
to invest its resource (i.e., advanced convergence algorithms: ICSTEP,
VSECTOL, AUTOTOL). This investment has also enabled Intusoft's free
custom modeling service to model complex ICs, originally thought not
possible by requesting engineers.
Special Simulation Analyses: When design criteria calls for
extremely high performance from a simulator, ICAP/4 pulls from its repertoire
of features that reach beyond competitive offerings. Transient-based
sensitivity analysis, Monte Carlo statistical analysis, worst-case analysis,
and extreme-value analysis vary designs to adverse conditions. For select
types of non-linear circuitry, root-summed squares analysis takes component
parameters to their worse case state, which actually lies between traditional
(less accurate) worst-case parametric extremes. Other analyses, such
as AC and transient sweeps; fault synthesis; and GFT analysis of open
loop properties in an unbroken closed loop push the capability of SPICE
beyond any present-day standard. All advanced analyses enable the user
to specify and monitor several electrical measurements (i.e., peak voltage,
rms voltage, mean value, rise time, initial value) affected by inter-component
sensitivity - ICAP/4's unique VSECTOL simulation parameter significantly
increases simulation speed by optimizing time step and percentage error
during runs. The ICSTEP algorithm enables simulation of high-gain feedback,
formerly not possible with SPICE3. All three parameters enable a host
of complex ICs and digital devices to be custom modeled.
ICAP/4 and IsSpice4 part of other EDA vendors'
products: Major EDA providers don't take lightly to using
another vendor's SPICE simulation technology as the core of their own
offering. The selection process is stringent and time-consuming. Intusoft
won out against leading SPICE vendors to supply its technology as part
of 4 major EDA tool providers' own products. They chose ICAP/4 as the
strongest and most technologically competent SPICE software. This is
a profound measure of quality for Intusoft's IsSpice4 kernel and ICAP/4
product at large.
Interactive Schematic Layering and Configurations: Managing
different sections of a design, or different design renditions, can
be time consuming and intensive. The SpiceNet design system provides
a patented layering feature and configuration scheme that simplifies
schematic entry and design management. Different design portions can
be created as schematic layers, which can be quickly highlighted for
identification, and reused or modified to create different design configurations
(i.e., for PCB, test, military standard, different model abstraction,
documentation, etc.). Any configuration is instantly brought to view
via a single mouse click from SpiceNet. Any connectivity and parametric
changes are automatically propagated to all schematic configurations
containing that circuitry.
"DSP Designer" is a new revolutionary breakthrough to DSP
design using ICAP/4 to simulate digital control algorithms and other
aspects of DSP. Special device models provide a visual means to simulate
functions and equivalent assembly code instructions for programming
DSP digital control, then view corresponding waveforms including Bode
plots of hidden parameters within Z-transformations. The product is
for verifying DSP programming input through a development board interface
running as a DSP idle process. DSP Designer enables large-signal line
and load transient analysis, start-up analysis, and noise injection
predicting EMI, as well as providing built in self-test (BIST) when
used within Intusofts Test Designer product.
In the near future the digital control from DSP Designer will be automatically
converted from IsSpice4 to assembly language format. Files are generated
that can be included in the DSPs integrated development environment
(IDE). DSP Designer also provides drivers to enable signals from a lab
oscilloscope and other test instruments to be viewed directly in ICAP/4s
IntuScope waveform viewing tool, alongside the equivalent
Schematic to Waveforms:
During an active debug cycle the engineer cannot always ascertain what
design nodes to plan on setting waveform markers for viewing. Therefore,
the ability to arbitrarily probe around the schematic following a simulation
run and instantaneously view waveforms is a tremendous time saver. Waveform
views are brought into the IntuScope waveform viewer or directly placed
on the schematic. Update for existing waveform views is a one-button
operation and selectable in three different modes: update plot, create
new plot, or add to plot.
Display DC Operating Points on Schematic:
Often with IC and board designers, it is advantageous to quickly display
a design's DC operating point information directly on the schematic.
Voltage, current and power are easily viewed with a mouse click.
component sweeps: This rare and valuable feature has been
with the ICAP/4 offering for many years because of the time it saves
during design debug. Component parameters can be set to a value, continuously
changed by pushing a button, or set as an expression, all with no schematic
intervention. Simulation results are displayed as simulations run.
Waveform Viewer/Calculator and Scripts: Though there are
several capable waveform viewers on the market today, the provision
of specialized waveform viewing and calculator capability can save an
abundance of time for the designer. For example, simultaneous display
of different analysis types, truly specialized functions with IntuScope's
waveform calculator, and provision of a powerful scripting language
for optionally modifying advanced simulation analyses or waveform operations
are part of Intusoft's commitment to a faster debug cycle. More than
170 thoroughly documented commands comprise the ICAP/4 scripting language,
though hundreds of predefined scripts are available for single-click
use or easy modification (i.e., 150+ waveform calculator functions).
Powerful pre-defined scripts for waveform calculator functions, such
as EMI standard, Hanning taper, several frequency filters, Black body
wave, wavelet filters and polynomial transformation, family eye diagram,
several signal transformations and math set new levels of industry standard.
Dozens of other scripts are available for special simulation analyses.
A one-of-a-kind Digital Data Viewer charts input digital busses at targeted
schematic nodes, which are prescribed in binary or BCD. Corresponding
outputs are displayed in decimal, hexadecimal, octal, binary, or mnemonic
format. All values are visually linked to any time step on a system
clock waveform in IntuScope.
and temperature variation in Models:
When designs rise to high frequency operation, frequency can influence
the modeling accuracy of passive components. ICAP/4's ability to program
passive devices to accommodate frequency and temperature variation helps
ensure truer design accuracy.
IC Models and IBIS-to-SPICE Converter:
Intusoft was first SPICE3 simulator to market with the BSIM MOSFET model.
Today it continues its leading position with the latest BSIM4 model,
several MESFET devices, and other models for IC design. ICAP/4's IBIS2SPICE
converter is powerful and the only one provided by any SPICE tool vendor.
Power Electronic Design: ICAP/4
is committed to power-electronic designers by providing the industry's
largest collection of power simulation models (1200+). It then adds
more than 30 pre-existing power supply design templates (circuit topologies)
for SMPS and related simulation. Intusoft strengthens this offering
through its marketing and technological collaboration with ON Semiconductor,
providing a number of SMPS topologies and ICs for SMPS design. Special
hysteretic average models, modified passive components and magnetic
devices have been created for accurate simulation of power electronic
circuitry. GFT models measure open loop characteristics in closed loop
SMPS design portions where the loop should not be broken to preserve
DC bias. An optional
Magnetics Designer package integrates the SPICE industry's
only full-featured, non-linear magnetic design and synthesis offering
for inductors, chokes and transformers. Magnetics Designer works in
conjunction with Intusoft's IsSpice4 simulation kernel to synthesize
inductive SPICE models, and also accommodates a substantial collection
of saturable cores.
Extensive Device Library: ICAP/4
provides more than 23,600 simulation models for any type of analog or
mixed-mode design. Within this collection lies an RF library of 600+
devices and a power device library of 1200+ devices. An optional C-code
modeling tool is available to create new models using C code. SpiceMod
enables quick creation and testing of 14 different types of discrete
devices by simply plugging in a manufacturer's datasheet parameters.
Dozens of generic models are supplied and are programmable so the user
can create custom ICs, discrete devices and models across different
engineering disciplines. Most ICAP/4 packages come with an automated
Pspice to Is Spice4 model converter.
Automated Measurements & Stress Alarm:
Intusoft allows the user to specify a wealth of circuit measurements
(i.e., rise time, max voltage, rms, pk-pk.), and assign of min/max limits
for desired signal lines or components. The simulator then automatically
records these measurements in chart form, including pass/fail histogram
display. Limits are easily set as user-prescribed value, from lab measurement,
or by outcome of multi-run analyses such as Monte Carlo, Worst Case
and Extreme Value. "Stress Alarms" flag components that have
exceeded their safe (or user specified) operating range.
Fault Injection: This time saving
and automated feature enables designers to impose shorts, opens and
stuck-at values on any device. Design nodes are automatically flagged
as pass or out-of-limit, while corresponding fault conditions are recorded
on components. Fault detection coverage and synthesized pseudo code
for automated test equipment are provided with Intusoft's "Test
Designer" SPICE simulation and test synthesis offering.
Newsletters: Intusoft has furnished 80 technical newsletters
to its customers and the design community at large. These are packed
with technical information dealing with design, models, product features
and application tips for engineers. In addition, Intusoft has produced
more than 100 technical articles for popular trade journals such as
IEEE Spectrum, Power Electronics Technology, Electronic Design, Magnetics
Business & Technology and several others.
Price: Intusoft maintains its dominance
by providing the most powerful mixed-signal simulation offering for
the mainstream end-user. An ICAP/4 customer receives today's leading
SPICE-based simulation technology, the most valuable and extensive set
of features, direct phone access to an unparalleled customer-service
program, and a relationship-marketing program for direct involvement
with the Intusoft team. Intusoft's products are very scalable to meet
with your budget, starting as low as $995.
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