MOSIS FAQs: Educational Program (MEP)
The most frequently asked questions about MOSIS Educational Program (MEP).
01 What is the MOSIS educational program (MEP)?
02 Who provides funding for the MEP?
03 Who is eligible for funding?
04 Will my university be required to contribute any funds?
05 Can I fabricate designs for student research or thesis work?
06 How many MEP accounts will one university need?
07 How can I establish a MEP account?
09 How often will I need to send an enrollment form for my MEP-Instructional account?
10 How many enrollment forms will I need to submit?
11 Who fills out the enrollment form?
12 What is the deadline for submitting enrollment forms to MOSIS?
14 When will I be notified of the amount awarded by MOSIS?
15 What technologies are available for student designs?
16 What is a TinyChip unit?
16.1 Is there a size limit for student designs?
16.2 How many parts will I get with each design I submit?
17 Are there any packaging restrictions for student designs?
18 How many student designs will I be allowed to fabricate?
19 How will my budget be calculated?
20 Can I increase my budget by adding university funds?
21 Is this budget good for the whole semester or is there a time frame in which I must use my allocation units or lose them?
22 When can I submit my students' designs?
23 Will I receive periodic account status reports from MOSIS?
24 Can student designs be fabricated on any MOSIS run?
25 Am I required to submit any reports to MOSIS?
26 Who can answer additional questions about this program?
01. What is the MOSIS educational program (MEP)?
02. Who provides funding for the MEP?
Educational runs are currently sponsored by MOSIS. ON Semiconductor provides two runs per year in the 0.5 µm C5N CMOS technology for the exclusive use of Instructional and Research account holders.
03. Who is eligible for funding?
The MOSIS Instructional program provides free fabrication of integrated circuits designed by students in organized classes associated with an accredited university.
The MOSIS Research program offers an opportunity to researchers affiliated with a university to fabricate a design that otherwise would not be fabricated. See Participation Guidelines for more details.
04. Will my university be required to contribute any funds?
At this time, no.
MOSIS continues to provide free fabrication and some packaging of integrated circuits in selected processes for projects designed in organized classes or unfunded research associated with an accredited university.
05. Can I fabricate designs for student research or thesis work?
Almost all thesis work will be fabricated under an MEP Research account. Research projects, thesis work, and designs derived from individually directed study are considered on a case by case basis. The proposal process, qualification requirements, and application instructions are described in the MOSIS online document MEP Research Program.
06. How many MEP accounts will one university need?
INSTRUCTIONAL accounts may be opened one per class, or one per instructor.
Each professor is responsible for their own RESEARCH account.
07. How can I establish a MEP account?
You can establish a MEP INSTRUCTIONAL account by completing and submitting the MEP INSTRUCTIONAL Account package
To establish a MEP RESEARCH account, complete and submit the MEP-RESEARCH Account package
Students cannot create an account with MOSIS.
08. Where can I get MEP Instructional account enrollment forms?
A PDF version of the INSTRUCTIONAL account enrollment form is available on the MOSIS web site.
Other MEP Instructional account forms are also available on the MOSIS web site.
09. How often will I need to send an enrollment form for my MEP-Instructional account?
You will need to send MEP INSTRUCTIONAL account enrollment forms to MOSIS at the beginning of each semester or quarter for which you need fabrication. The following must be attached to each enrollment form, even if information hasn't changed since the last time you sent it to MOSIS.
- Course description
- Professor's background and qualifications
10. How many enrollment forms will I need to submit?
You will need to submit a separate MEP INSTRUCTIONAL account enrollment form for each class that will be sending designs to MOSIS: not one form per course, but one form per class. If you are teaching the same course to two different classes in a semester, you will need two forms.
You will need to submit a separate MEP Research proposal for each design you intend to fabricate through MOSIS.
11. Who fills out the enrollment form?
Forms are typically filled out by the class professor, and they must be signed by the department chairperson.
12. What is the deadline for submitting enrollment forms?
INSTRUCTIONAL account enrollment forms must be sent to MOSIS within 30 days of the first day of class, and they may not be submitted until the actual (not estimated) number of enrolled students is known.
13. Where should I send my enrollment forms?
Enrollment forms are submitted through the MOSIS Web site using a Web form. Do not print it and mail a hard copy or save it as an electronic file and e-mail it. Returning the enrollment form other than online will only delay the process, not speed it up.
14. When will I be notified of the amount awarded by MOSIS?
You should be contacted by MOSIS within 1 week after your enrollment form is received.
15. What technologies are available for student designs?
16. What is a TinyChip unit?
MEP Instructional allocations are expressed in TinyChip units, rather than dollars or number of integrated circuits. A TinyChip unit for a given process represents both an allocation of project area and a quantity of parts to be delivered.
Grants for MEP Research projects are expressed in micrometers (or millimeters), not in TinyChip units. The chip area is approved based on the requirements/merits of the proposal. Each project is evaluated individually, and approval is given for the size (in x and y) specified in the proposal.
16.1 Is there a size limit for student designs?
MEP Research designs are not to exceed 4 mm².
The TinyChip dimension for an MEP Instructional project is 1.5 mm x 1.5 mm, whether it is designed in the ON Semiconductor 0.50 micron C5N or GlobalFoundries 130 nm 8RF-DM technology. Designs submitted to the 8RF-DM process cannot exceed one TinyChip unit.
MEP Instructional designs for the ON Semi C5N process may be larger, by using more TinyChip units in multiples of 1.5 mm x 1.5 mm, up to 3.0 mm x 3.0 mm; one lot of which would be 4 TinyChip units. Designs submitted to the ON Semi C5N process canot exceed 3.0 mm in either dimension or request more than 10 parts of one design.
16.2 How many parts will I get with each design I submit?
One prototype lot per project designed in a supported technology
ON Semiconductor C5N: one lot of five parts per design
GF 8RF-DM: one lot of forty parts per design
MEP INSTRUCTIONAL users may order additional lots for the ON Semi C5N process; not for the GF_8RF-DM. Each additional lot will be charged a TinyChip unit against your budget.
The following examples illustrate how TinyChip units are allocated for MEP Instructional projects submitted to the ON Semi C5N process. Multiple TinyChip units can no longer be assigned to one project in the GFUS 8RF-DM technology.
|1.5 x 1.5||5||1|
|1.5 x 1.5||10||2|
|1.5 x 3.0||5||2|
|1.5 x 3.0||10||4|
|3.0 x 3.0||5||4|
17. Are there any packaging restrictions for student designs?
The following pertain to designs submitted under MEP Instructional and MEP Research accounts
- Special Handling (as, die rotation);
- Customers may supply their own bonding diagrams.
- Customers may request a special down bond.
- Customers may order a combination of packaged and unpackaged parts.
- One bonding diagram per design;
- Maximum 5 packaged parts per design -- the balance will be shipped unpackaged;
- DIP40, DIP28, and OCP_QFN are the only available packages;
- Lids cannot be sealed;
- Packaging must be ordered when parts are fabricated.
18. How many student designs will I be allowed to fabricate?
There is no specific allocation formula. Your enrollment form should include the number of students enrolled and the number of chips you expect to fabricate. MOSIS will make an award after considering your request and the total amount of funding available.
The number and size of designs are limited. Please see What is the MEP Research Program for specific information.
19. How will my budget be calculated?
There is no specific allocation formula. You will receive approval to fabricate a certain number of TinyChip units. See Section 16 for the definition of a TinyChip.
20. Can I increase my budget by adding university funds?
MEP is intended to support unfunded projects. MEP budget cannot be increased.
Universities are always welcome to pay MOSIS directly for fabrication of any chip. You can do this by signing a customer agreement form to establish a commercial MOSIS account, and sending MOSIS a purchase order to cover the cost of fabrication. A special price has been established by MOSIS for university orders, and is automatically provided when you include your account number in the Request for Price Quote forms.
21. Is this allocation good for the whole semester or is there a time frame in which I must use my allocation units or lose them?
The funding year for the MOSIS educational program is from October 1 to September 30. This is also referred to as the "academic year."
An unused balance at the end of the funding year will not carry over into the next funding year.
The layout size cannot exceed 4 mm2. Layout must be submitted within 12 months of approval. Years without submissions or layout under 4 mm2 cannot "carry forward" into the next academic year.
22. When can I submit my students' designs?For information common to all designs submitted to MOSIS, please see the MOSIS FAQ Submitting Designs.
You may submit a project for fabrication before the end of your funding year for a run that closes after the end of your funding year. The final version of that design must be accepted into the MOSIS fabrication queue by September 30.
Final layout must be submitted within 12 months of the proposal approval date.
23. Will I receive periodic account status reports from MOSIS?
You can generate a report at your convenience. Connect to the MOSIS Login Center and select Account Management.
Accounting is given in TinyChip units, not dollars, and includes:
- Number of TinyChips in Budget
- Number of TinyChips Queued for Fab
- Number of TinyChips In Fab
- Number of TinyChips Completed
- Current account balance (in TinyChip units)
The reports include your account number, identification information, and expiration date.
24. Can student designs be fabricated on any MOSIS run?
MEP projects are fabricated on regularly scheduled multi-project wafer runs on a space-available basis. Paying commercial projects have priority on these wafer runs. Should commercial projects completely fill the reticle on the requested run, then any MEP project queued for that run will not be fabricated on that run. When an MEP designs is not fabricated on a requested run, send an update request and select another date from the pull-down menu in the Run Date Requested parameter. The design will stay in the fabrication queue and be considered for that run, again on a space-available basis.
25. Am I required to submit any reports to MOSIS?
Universities who received funding under the MOSIS educational program are required to send a report to MOSIS for each student design submitted for fabrication.
Reports for projects fabricated under an Instructional account can be submitted by using the Test Report Web Form. To access the Test Report Web Form go to the MOSIS Login page enter design number and password in the Project Management section and submit your request. Once on the Project Management page, select "Submit Test Results Report" in the "Other Requests" section.
Please see MEP Research Reporting Requirements before submitting a report for a project fabricated under a Research account.
26. Who can answer additional questions about this program?
Connect to the MOSIS Login Center then post your questions to the MOSIS Support Inquirty System.