The country’s launch of new infrastructure has become a hot spot in the industry. Different from traditional infrastructure, new infrastructure refers to infrastructure such as 5G, artificial intelligence, industrial Internet, Internet of Things, and data centers. These constructions require both general computing power and dedicated computing power. Diversified computing power is an important technical cornerstone of the new infrastructure. As one of the general-purpose processors, the CPU is the most important computing power carrier. So, in the implementation of this round of new infrastructure, what assistance can the domestic CPU industry play? How will it take the opportunity to develop? “China Electronics News” interviewed Zhang Chengyi, deputy general manager of Tianjin Feiteng.
Zhang Chengyi, Deputy General Manager of Tianjin Feiteng
Domestic chips provide computing power support for new infrastructure
Among the seven fields defined by the new infrastructure, no matter which field it is, it is inseparable from the support of computing power, which has become a new productivity. Regarding how domestic CPU companies can help the implementation of new infrastructure, Zhang Chengyi said that chips are the core of computing power, and domestic chips will be the main supporting force for new infrastructure. After years of accumulation and development, domestic chips have been applied in large quantities in many fields, and it is no longer “raised in a deep boudoir and unknown”. In addition to chips in some consumer electronics, domestic chip companies such as Feiteng, Baidu, Huawei, Ziguang, Dawning, and Bitmain are also present in high-performance computers, data center servers, core backbone networks, and artificial intelligence. At the same time, the application scale of domestic chips has been increasing year by year, which is a great responsibility. In recent years, with the downward shift in the core competitiveness of technology and the changes in the new market situation, the domestic chip industry has ushered in a new wave of innovation and entrepreneurship, and chip companies targeting specific application fields have emerged one after another. The implementation of the new infrastructure provides a new stage for the development of domestic chips.
Since the new infrastructure involves many national strategic pillar industries and has high requirements for technical security, security issues have received more and more attention. The “National Standard for Level Protection 2.0”, which was officially implemented in December 2019, requires the comprehensive use of secure and reliable products and services to ensure the security of critical infrastructure. Academician Shen Changxiang once pointed out that trusted computing should start from the underlying basic hardware such as chips. On the premise of not destroying the logic of software code, it can prevent threats before they occur, and effectively establish an “immune system” for network security.
According to Zhang Chengyi’s introduction, Feiteng has built a product stack of secure and trusted systems. First, at the chip design level, it implements security-related functions, improves chip security features, and formulates the security architecture standard PSPA for Feiteng processors. PSPA is the first time a domestic CPU company has released a security architecture standard at the CPU level, which realizes the bottom-up intrinsic safety of computer systems from the CPU level. Second, at the system solution level, an active immune trusted computing platform, an endogenous immune anti-corruption subsystem, and an independent high-performance green computing platform have been built.
Build an industrial ecology of coordinated development
Zhang Chengyi pointed out that at present, Feiteng and other domestic CPU companies have grown up, and their products cover major application scenarios such as high-performance computing, servers, desktops, mobile and embedded. Apply in batches. In addition to the CPU, some other key core chips, such as GPU, FPGA, and AI chips, are also gradually maturing and growing. However, we must also see that domestic chip manufacturers have not yet formed scale effect and cluster effect, and the strength of a single enterprise is not very strong, especially the software and hardware ecosystem is relatively weak, and the linkage between upstream and downstream enterprises in the industrial chain is not sufficient. There are still many obstacles.
The new infrastructure is a huge system, and the seven fields are cross-integrated and cannot be viewed in isolation. The seven major areas of the new infrastructure involve many upstream and downstream providers in the information industry chain, and close coordination from the end to the cloud is required to make the new infrastructure system seamless and efficient. This is the core of the operation of the new infrastructure system. If computing power is more about examining the operating efficiency and performance of equipment, then collaboration mainly considers the cooperation of different software and hardware in the system. Only by forming an ecological synergy can the value of computing power be maximized.
As a domestic CPU manufacturer with full-stack solutions from terminal to cloud, Feiteng is also accelerating the construction, development and popularization of various solutions based on the Feiteng platform by taking advantage of the opportunity of this new infrastructure to build an ecosystem of coordinated development. Feiteng recently launched the Feiteng platform industry solution square, and cooperated with more than 70 ecological partners to release 4 categories and more than 80 industry joint solutions, covering Xinchuang, telecommunications, finance, energy, transportation, medical care, digital city, industry Manufacturing and other industries, while coupling cloud computing, big data, 5G, AI, blockchain and other technical directions, solving the “last mile” problem of domestic chip industry applications, and accelerating the implementation of new infrastructure and empowerment.
Investing in IC focuses on three areas
The implementation of this round of “new infrastructure” provides a new “window” for capital. Integrated circuits are also the focus of capital attention in recent years. On this occasion, which directions should investment in the integrated circuit field focus on?
Zhang Chengyi said that the “window” of integrated circuit investment in recent years is not due to new infrastructure, but because the industry has seen the important supporting role of integrated circuits as a modern industrial “food” for social development. In this field, there are gaps in our country and development The space is huge. The investment return cycle of the integrated circuit industry is relatively long and the risks are relatively high. At present, none of these investments are benefited by the new infrastructure, which is conducive to strengthening everyone’s confidence and sticking to this direction without hesitation. In addition to continuing to increase investment in all aspects of the industrial chain, the following aspects are also worthy of our attention:
The first is the big data center. The construction of big data centers will increase the demand for hardware equipment such as servers, storage equipment, network equipment, security equipment, and optical modules. All kinds of chips in these core devices are facing explosive growth. The data center business has put forward comprehensive requirements for high reliability, scalability, low power consumption, virtualization and other availability aspects of core CPU chips, which will surely lead the innovation of CPU architecture. The cloudification of more dedicated services such as intelligent computing has also promoted the rapid development of domain-oriented dedicated processors.
Secondly, the construction of 5G communication network has brought a lot of new upstream and downstream demand to the integrated circuit industry. Chips are the key to promoting the development of the 5G industry. Technological innovations in key components such as baseband chips, radio frequency chips, and SoC chipsets have a profound impact on 5G network upgrades and equipment integration. The diversified application scenarios of 5G have brought huge market opportunities for manufacturers providing value-added services around 5G, and further put forward higher requirements for the core chips of various equipment.
Another area of concern is the industrial Internet. The Industrial Internet complements big data and 5G. The collection, transmission, storage and analysis of industrial equipment data have put forward new requirements for corresponding sensing, communication and computing chips, including real-time performance, resistance to harsh environments, and high throughput rates. The full-stack requirements of the industrial Internet from end to cloud have brought a very broad market space to the integrated circuit industry.