IC Development Cycle :
The IC development process of digital integrated circuit is as shown in Figure below.
The process is consists of different steps as follows.
Define specifications : The process begins with the IC specifications. The expected
features and the design technology is fixed up in this step. The specifications must be
tight enough so that the developed product meets the expected features.
Initial design : From a complete set of specifications it is necessary to define the
general structure of an initial design of the IC. It is usually performed by the designers
using the different design rules.
Simulation : When the initial design is finished the results must be verified against the
original specifications. CAD tools are used to simulate the behaviour of complex ICs
and such simulators are used to determine whether the obtained design meets the
required specifications or not.
Prototype implementation : When the simulation indicates that the design is correct, a
complete physical prototype of the product is constructed using the devices such as
Programmable Logic Devices (PLD).
Testing : The Prototype is thoroughly tested for the intended results as per the
specifications. Any errors occurred in the testing must be fixed; the errors can be
eliminated by making small corrections directly on the prototype.
Final product : When the prototype passes all the tests, then the product is said to be
final IC and send to the production.