Once a design is committed to silicon, you want it to be right. Time, money, and your reputation can be wasted on a malfunctioning ASIC. This paper will cover the steps to take before fabrication that will minimize your chances of failure and maximize your chances of success for first silicon. These steps include how to write a specification, top-down design, simulation, test vector generation, and good procedural practices.

This paper is aimed at the engineer who is facing an ASIC design or wants to be prepared for one. Those who have never designed an ASIC will find this paper especially beneficial, and experienced ASIC designers will find this paper to be a useful reference.