In a first, ‘Made In India’ Computer chip ‘Shakti’ developed & built by our Indian students

The Indian Institute of Technology in Madras scripted history in the field of Indian computing. A team of active engineers from the institute has managed to design, develop and boot up the first ever built microprocessor, identified as ‘Shakti’ which can be used in mobile computing and wireless devices.

As per a statement from the university, the new Shakti processor can be used instead of imported processors as they are well up to international standards. The significant component was fabricated at the Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) Semi-Conductor Laboratory in Chandigarh, making it the first RISC V processor fully designed, developed and made in India.

As per the statement, another significant part of the Shakti microprocessor is that it’s less vulnerable to systems which are infected with backdoors and hardware Trojans. So, IIT Madras says it’s safe to be followed by the government agencies, nuclear power plants, and also defence groups.

“With the advent of Digital India, there are several applications that require customisable processor cores,” lead researcher Prof Kamakoti Veezhinathan said at the announcement. “The 180nm fabrication facility at SCL Chandigarh is crucial in getting these cores manufactured within our country.”

The Shakti processors allow for different clock speeds to match the different needs of end-user devices. In addition to that, it also has low power modes ideal for IoT gadgets and wireless networking systems. The complete development project was funded by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology. No need to rely on imported processors anymore because Shakti is there!

Another important thing is that the processor is an open source and so, anyone can take these chips and modify or adjust them to suit their own needs.

Future chip stages will have a E-Class, C-Class, I-Class, M-Class, S-Class, and H-Class processor. The C-class has a clock speed of 0.2-1 GHz, the I-class between 1.5 to 2.5 GHz including the M-class at the same speed, supporting up to 8 cores.

Last but not the least, S-Class processor will be aimed at server workloads, with the H-Class designed for analytics and high-level computing for AI research and training.