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Libre-SOC and RED Semiconductor Limited announce the signing of a Partnership Agreement and define their route to first commercial product.

Libre-SOC and RED Semiconductor Ltd. announce Partnership Agreement and define their route to first commercial product.

RED Semiconductor today consolidates its foundation with a partnership Memorandum of Understanding with Libre-SOC that will lead to the development and supply of a family advanced off-the-shelf microprocessor chips enabling system developers to accelerate software development utilising Open/Libre tools and methodology. The RED Semiconductor will utilise Libre-SOC’s vector instruction prefix for the POWER ISA to deliver higher computation performance of complex real-time algorithms and routines, from a small-size low-cost processor platform. Under the MOU, the Libre-SOC team will support RED Semiconductor’s product development, and benefit from RED’s commercial market engagement.

RED Semiconductor Ltd. formed to pursue the commercial development of silicon chip technology as an extension of the Libre, Open/Libre microprocessor project operating under the name of Libre-SOC.

Within a four-year EU funded project* Libre-SOC has developed a next generation Vector instruction set concept Simple-V, resulting in RED Semiconductor’s Vector+1 implementation, an instruction precursor which significantly enhances the key performance characteristics of high computational microprocessor instruction sets by dynamic vectorisation.

Augmenting the OpenPOWER ISA first developed by IBM, RED Semiconductor is using the draft SVP64 implementation of Vector+1 to design a family of new microprocessors to be marketed as their Vantage family, of which the first device a 2-core will be the Vantage-Luna.

Libre-SOC and RED Semiconductor will assist, cooperate and share information, data and understanding to enhance the Libre-SOC processor core, Vector+1 and SVP64 technology to the mutual benefit of both organisations.

Libre-SOC and RED Semiconductor have agreed to implement a cross licencing agreement whereby RED Semiconductor will benefit from an in-perpetuity license to use all Libre-SOC source code for unrestricted use in commercial products.  Libre-SOC will receive rights to processor core, Vector+1 and SVP64 technology enhancements of Libre-SOCs technology by RED Semiconductor, but not certain key IP assets relating to physical implementation of microprocessor chips.

RED Semiconductor will also engage Libre-SOC in joint commercial development activities that will constitute IP owned by Libre-SOC and or RED Semiconductor defined at the time and the two organisations also plan to act in mutual support particularly in the areas of joint activity such as grant applications, Request for Changes to standards bodies and similar.

David Calderwood, co-founder and chairman of RED Semiconductor reported, “This technology partnering agreement enables Red Semiconductor to accelerate development of a new class of high-performance microprocessors capable of performing GPU and enhanced mathematical computation with the performance and power consumption benefits of vectorised instructions.”

About RED Semiconductor:

RED Semiconductor’s mission is to develop and deliver a new class of microprocessor chip set optimised for vector instructions that enable complex computational routines to be performed in fewer clock cycles, with smaller binaries, and consuming less power than any existing microprocessor of comparable capability. The company is based in the United Kingdom and was formed in 2021. 

About Libre-SOC:

Libre-SOC is an Open/Libre development community in which a global collective of the best microprocessor engineers is developing techniques and implementations to revolutionise microprocessor performance through the use of Cray-style vector instructions. Their objective is to bring supercomputer-class computing to the desktop. www.libre-soc.org

*Libre-SOC would like to acknowledge and thank the support and funding provided by NLnet and NGI Pointer, under the auspices of the EU Horizon initiative, and is an example of what can be achieved with well thought out government funding initiatives. www.libre-soc.org

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