Seagate has designed a pair of custom RISC-V cores to be used in future products as next-generation storage controllers. The chips, which are not referred to by any codename or brand, come in two flavors: A high-performance core and an area-optimized core. The high performance core has already been built “with RISC-V-enabled silicon,” while the smaller core “has been designed and is in the process of being built.”
The phrase “RISC-V-enabled silicon” is a little odd — we wouldn’t normally say “ARM-enabled silicon” or “x86 enabled silicon,” but since they seem to go on to refer to tapeout and initial foundry work on the other chip, the most likely explanation is that Seagate has is qualifying its high-performance chip for future shipping products, while the area-optimized core is a few steps farther back in the process.
“Having shipped close to one billion cores over the last year, Seagate has developed significant expertise in system-on-a-chip design,” said Cecil Macgregor, Vice President, ASIC Development. “We now expanded the capability to add customized RISC-V cores to our portfolio, which is critical to future products. We live in a time of unprecedented growth of enterprise data—and much of this data is in motion. These cores will allow devices to share a common RISC-V ISA. Using open security architectures, they will enable more secure movement of data.”