Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras Researchers have booted ‘MOUSHIK’, a processor cum ‘system on chip’, which has been conceptualized, designed and developed at Pratap Subrahmanyam Centre for Digital Intelligence and Secure Hardware Architecture of Rise Group, Deaprtment of Computer Science and Engineering, IIT Madras. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Government of India, has funded this project.
According to Prof. Kamakoti Veezhinathan, RISE Group, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, IIT Madras, there are three steps involved in the making of a microprocessor, which are Design, Fabrication and Post-Silicon Boot-up. All three processors were undertaken in India which in turn demonstrates an ‘Atma Nirbhar’ ecosystem in Digital Design Productization.
The Field applications of ‘MOUSHIK’ include Smart Cards, Electronic Voting Machines, Office Management Systems, Personalized Health Management Systems and Consumer Electronics. Prof Kamakoti listed the benefits to India from such developed Microprocessors:
1. The first indigenous chip in the SHAKTI series was designed and booted up SHAKTI in October 2018 which acts as a building block for mobile computing devices, embedded low power wireless systems and networking systems besides reducing reliance on imported microprocessors in Communications and Defence Sectors
2. SHAKTI microprocessor is on par with International Standards and it has potential to pave way for global market. The design of the SHAKTI microprocessor is based on RISC-V ISA ( Instruction Set Architecture).
3. As it is an open source, any industry including startups can take the design and customize it based on their needs.
4. Another crucial part is reducing the risk of deploying systems that may be infected with back-doors and hardware Trojans.