Ni Guangnan: Should properly focus on the RISC-V architecture

The 16th China Chip Integrated Circuit Industry Promotion Conference and the launch ceremony of the “China Chip” Excellent Product Solicitation Event were held in Zhuhai. Ni Guangnan, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, pointed out in his speech that China can appropriately focus on the RISC-V architecture Develop the chip industry, so as to seize the opportunity of rapid development of China's chip industry, and not be restricted by foreign monopoly structures, and firmly control the development of the chip industry in their own hands.

Academician Ni Guangnan said that the CPU (central processing unit) architecture is the leader of the chip industry chain. It not only determines the performance of the CPU but also leads the entire chip industry to a large extent. In particular, it has a major impact on the development of design talents, design tools (EDA), chip IP libraries, and applied ecology. In addition, it also affects chip production, testing, and packaging. In recent years, the proportion of SoC products containing microprocessors in chip products has increased to more than 70%, which shows that the impact of CPU architecture on the chip industry is continuing to grow.

Academician Ni Guangnan believes that after the development of the Chinese chip industry in recent years, some companies have made great achievements in the industry. There are already many domestic CPU architectures coexisting in the market (such as Feiteng, Huawei, Shenwei, Loongson, Haiguang, Zhaoxin, etc.). However, in the long run, mainstream CPU architecture has a strong monopoly. In the future, mainstream CPUs in the world market are likely to be monopolized by x86 and ARM, which are the property rights of American companies. It can be seen that my country's existing pattern of coexistence of multiple CPU architectures is difficult to obtain a competitive advantage, so it is still difficult for my country's chip industry to get rid of the situation of being constrained by others in the end.

In recent years, an emerging, open-source RISC-V streamlined instruction set CPU architecture has provided opportunities for the development of the chip industry. Academician Ni Guangnan pointed out that the RISC-V architecture was invented in 2010 by the Department of Computer Science at the University of California, Berkeley. Choose whether to publicly issue, or commercial sales or replace other license agreements or completely closed source use.

More importantly, the RISC-V Foundation, which leads this open-source community, moved from the United States to Switzerland last year. Academician Ni Guangnan believes that this can help the RISC-V architecture help get rid of the impact of US trade sanctions. In addition, the leader of the foundation, Professor David Patterson, also established a joint laboratory in Shenzhen and Tsinghua University.

Academician Ni Guangnan said that in recent years, after evaluation and trial use by various circles of domestic academic research, it is generally believed that RISC-V has advanced architecture and complete functions, and it is possible to gain market advantages in the new generation of information technology fields such as AI, IoT, big data, and cloud computing. Thus, in the future world mainstream CPU architecture, there will be one-third of the world.

To this end, Academician Ni Guangnan suggested that my country can appropriately focus on the RISC-V architecture to develop the chip industry, so as to seize the opportunity of rapid development of the Chinese chip industry, and not be restricted by foreign monopoly structures, and firmly control the development of the chip industry. Hands. Given that RISC-V adopts an open-source model, this does not require a large amount of capital investment, but mainly to establish technical routes, organize and mobilize open source communities, open-source talents, and carry out corresponding policy guidance, etc., so as to give full play to the advantages of our nationwide system and enrich Talent advantage and super large-scale market advantage.

At present, in the field of open source, Chinese scientific and technical personnel have created some open source communities, and have considerable say or even a certain degree of dominance, such as OpenEuler, OpenHarmony, etc., which shows that the Chinese open source community is achieving new innovation breakthroughs, gradually moving from open source A big country is moving towards an open-source power. Academician Ni Guangnan said: “In this context, in the near future, we are co-planning with software institutes, some universities and enterprises and the China Guanghua Science and Technology Foundation of the League Central Committee to initiate the establishment of a RISC-V ecological special fund. The strong support of RISC-V has quickly formed a driving force for the development of China’s RISC-V open-source chips, making it a cornerstone of my country’s information technology system. I hope to use the strong vitality of open source to promote the development of domestic science and technology and contribute to the world’s open-source community. Make an outstanding contribution."

"Let us in the chip industry and our peers in the world embrace the new trend of RISC-V open-source chips, make full use of the open-source model, and collaborate with developers around the world to jointly promote the development of open-source RISC-V, and at the same time, for the rapid development of my country’s chip industry and the construction of human technology Contribute to a community with a shared future." Academician Ni Guangnan said.

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