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Semiconductor packaging best practices​

High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) Integration

High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) integration has become the preferred standard for applications such as high-performance computing (HPC) CPUs, GPUs, and AI. To achieve High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) integration, package designers must adhere to several best practices, outlined in the eBook below.

What is High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) integration?

High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) integration in IC package design refers to the incorporation of HBM technology within the packaging of the IC. This involves designing the package to accommodate HBM memory modules, which are stacked vertically on the IC die.

Why High Bandwidth Memory integration is important

Smaller form factor

High bandwidth memory (HBM) integration results in substantially smaller form factors than DDR.


HBM offers improved performance compared to traditional memory technologies like DDR (Double Data Rate) and SDRAM.

Energy efficiency

High Bandwidth Memory's exceptional energy efficiency makes it the go-to choice for a wide range of applications.

High Bandwidth Memory (HBM)​ integration

Learn more about efficient high bandwidth memory (HBM) integration capabilities provided with Xpedition Package Designer for IC packaging design. Specifically you will see a demo of our patented "sketch" router technology.

High Bandwidth Memory (HBM)​ using xPD

In this short 1-minute video you will see a demonstration of Xpedition Package Designers patented “sketch” router being used on a high bandwidth memory (HBM) memory interface​. This is just one way that our software supports High Bandwidth Memory integration.

High Bandwidth Memory integration resources

Frequently asked questions

What is High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) used for?

High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) is primarily used in high-performance computing (HPC), graphics processing units (GPUs), artificial intelligence (AI), and other data-intensive applications. It is employed to provide fast and efficient memory access for processing large volumes of data quickly.

How does HBM contribute to improving system performance in IC packaging design?

HBM significantly contributes to improving system performance in IC packaging design by offering higher bandwidth, lower latency, improved energy efficiency, compact form factor, suitability for parallel computing, and scalability. These advantages make it a preferred choice for a wide range of applications demanding high-performance memory solutions.

Is HBM necessary?

While HBM may not be necessary for every system, it offers significant advantages in terms of performance, space efficiency, energy efficiency, and future scalability for applications that demand high memory bandwidth and low latency. Evaluating the specific requirements and constraints of the system will help determine whether HBM is a necessary choice.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of HBM?

High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) offers several advantages, including significantly higher bandwidth, lower latency, reduced power consumption, compact form factor, scalability, and support for highly parallel access, making it suitable for high-performance computing, artificial intelligence, and graphics processing applications. However, HBM also has some disadvantages, such as higher manufacturing costs compared to traditional memory technologies, limited availability in certain market segments, and potential compatibility issues with existing systems, which may necessitate design modifications or additional development efforts to integrate HBM into new or existing platforms effectively.

What are some of the emerging trends and developments in HBM technology for IC packaging design?

Emerging trends in HBM (High Bandwidth Memory) technology for IC packaging design include increasing stack heights for greater memory capacity and bandwidth, advancements in manufacturing processes leading to higher-density and more energy-efficient solutions, integration with advanced semiconductor process nodes to enhance performance and power efficiency, exploration of novel architectures like hybrid memory cube (HMC) and alternative stacking techniques, utilization in heterogeneous integration platforms for tailored applications, ongoing standardization efforts for interoperability, and focus on thermal management solutions to address increasing thermal challenges. These developments collectively drive improvements in performance, efficiency, scalability, and integration capabilities, positioning HBM to meet the evolving requirements of high-performance computing, artificial intelligence, and networking applications.

What is the recommended design approach for integrating HBM?

HBM uses a SerDes based interface architecture using a 1024-bit bus divided into channels, typically structured as either 8 x 128bit or 16 x 64bit configurations. The recommended implementation approach is the initial step involves creating complex via geometries for fanout/breakout structures. These structures facilitate routing the bits of the channel from complex via breakouts on the logic die side to the breakouts on the HBM stack. Once the initial channel is completed and characterized for electrical compliance, it serves as a template for replication and reuse across the memory stack.

What are the common design challenges faced by semiconductor package designers when integrating HBM?

The integration of HBM memory demands a strategic approach to address multifaceted challenges. Designers must balance performance requirements with efficiency and flexibility to adapt to evolving design iterations. The challenges faced by package designers can be broadly categorized into four key areas:

  • Maintaining signal integrity is paramount in HBM integration, given the high-speed data transfer involved. Advanced signal integrity analysis tools and techniques are employed to mitigate signal degradation and ensure reliable data transmission.
  • Ensuring power delivery stability is another critical aspect, as HBM memory requires consistent and robust power delivery to meet performance specifications. Careful power distribution network design and optimization are essential to minimize voltage fluctuations and ensure stable operation.
  • Managing routing real-estate efficiently: Efficient utilization of routing real-estate presents yet another challenge, particularly in densely packed designs where space is limited. Optimized routing algorithms and layout techniques are employed to maximize routing efficiency while minimizing signal crosstalk and interference.
  • Meeting design cycle time constraints is a perpetual challenge in HPC development, where time-to-market is critical. Agile methodologies and automated design workflows are leveraged to streamline the integration process and accelerate time-to-market.