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Intel, DARPA Seek to Advance US Production of Secure Custom Chips Through ‘SAHARA’ Program

Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency have teamed up on a program to advance the domestic production of structured application specific integrated circuit platforms for defense electronic systems.

Intel said Thursday it will collaborate with the University of Florida, Texas A&M University and University of Maryland to equip custom chips with security countermeasure technologies to protect intellectual property and data against counterfeiting and reverse engineering attacks under the Structured Array Hardware for Automatically Realized Applications program.

The company will also use its 10nm process and Intel eASIC structured ASIC technology to speed up the development of secure custom chips under the three-year SAHARA partnership.

“In partnering with Intel on the SAHARA program, DARPA aims to transform currently fielded as well as future capabilities into structured ASIC implementations with significantly higher performance and lower power consumption,” said Serge Leef, a program manager at DARPA’s Microsystems Technology Office. 

“SAHARA aims to dramatically shorten the ASIC design process through automation while adding unique security features to support manufacturing of the resulting silicon in zero-trust environments,” added Leef.

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