STMicroelectronics and INRIA, the French national institute for research in computer science and control (Institut National de Recherche en Informatique et en Automatique), announced on November 21, 2008, that they have signed a partnership agreement covering embedded systems. Embedded systems require increasingly greater software capability and content so they are able to detect, communicate, adapt and act in various sectors from automotive to telecommunications and consumer electronics. Under the agreement, STMicroelectronics and INRIA will work together to identify areas of research to address technological needs, enabling them to anticipate and respond to the challenges ahead with solutions shaped by industry requirements.
This collaboration is designed to enable a two-way transfer process between the two partners. For STMicroelectronics, the aim is to integrate the application of the joint research into its products. While for INRIA, these joint efforts will make it easier for them to tackle critical research issues driven by industrial challenges and the need to develop large-scale applications.
Under the partnership, STMicroelectronics and INRIA will:
- Identify the main areas of research to meet the challenges that microelectronics has to face
- Set up research teams from across their respective organizations in joint projects
- Within the scope of these joint projects, transfer the results from INRIA to STMicroelectronics
In addition, new technologies in the field of embedded software and the creation of patents are also expected through this partnership.
STMicroelectronics and INRIA have already collaborated for many years, most notably as part of the Minalogic competitiveness cluster in the Rhône-Alpes region and the SCS Solutions Communicantes Sécurisées (software for secure communications) competitiveness cluster in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur Region, resulting in the design of the “IGlance” demonstration platform for 3D and digital television. Today, the two partners are leveraging their collaboration at a strategic level enabling several teams at the Institute to work with their counterparts at STMicroelectronics.
This partnership has initiated five new research projects – already under way – focusing on three topics: program execution on embedded multicore processors, multimedia applications and the embedded system design process. INRIA teams at Rennes, Grenoble, Sophia Antipolis and Rocquencourt are working in partnership with STMicroelectronics teams on these programs.
Additional longer term projects will be launched. Areas of focus will include embedded systems, formal methods (especially for system verification), efficient compilation of programming languages, multicore system architecture and critical system dependability.
The partnership will develop and integrate new software into its System-on-Chip (SoC) solutions to address device functionalities. The tie-up is part of STMicroelectronics’s ongoing efforts to expand its innovation capability through collaboration with public research organizations.
For INRIA, the partnership reflects the importance of technology transfer in the field of Information and Communications Science and Technologies. It illustrates the institute’s research and transfer strategy pursued with leading industrial groups. INRIA’s eight regional research facilities are involved in more than 20 of France’s competitiveness clusters, several of which are “world-class” clusters. INRIA also networks to forge partnerships with the industrial community. Fostering synergy among their constituent companies and research institutes is one of the defining roles of France’s competitiveness clusters.