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    Russian Electronics: Semiconductor and Processors

    caveat emptor
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    Post  caveat emptor Sat Oct 22, 2022 9:14 pm

    Kudrin was wrong from a standpoint of pushing for neoliberal policies, but he was able to survive that long, because Russian government elites are also sympathetic to same ideas. Maybe things will change now, but that still remains to be seen and confirmed over a period of several years.
    For state of the electronics industry there are several responsible people. One is already mentioned Chubais, who squandered hundreds of billion of rubles through shady deals in Rosnano and second is ex- minister of telecommunication (till 2008) and ex-owner of Angstrem-T (until bankruptcy) Leonid Reiman, about whom not many people here heard of, but is a major player in telecommunications and electronics in Russia. He is practically a billionaire and wholy responsible for debacle of Angstrem. Let me remind you that Russian government wrote down about a billion euros of debt to Angstrem 6-7 years ago, plus company went  bankrupt in 2019 because they couldn't pay off over 800 million euros provided  by VEB.
    Third responsible person is Sergei Chemezov, who is still, unfortunately, head of Rostec.

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    Post  sepheronx Sat Oct 22, 2022 9:45 pm

    Yet Rostec is doing quite well and is one of the major responsibilities of russias advancements in auto CNC, 3d printing and rescuing the defense enterprises right now, oh and engine and plane development too.

    So either he made a change around from learning past failures or he is wrongfully blamed.

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    Post  caveat emptor Sat Oct 22, 2022 10:08 pm

    Rostec coopted some already great companies, such as KRET or Shvabe or some other where they have minority stake ( Kalashnikov, Avtovaz, Kamaz, etc). They basically own whole Russian defense industry with exclusion of Almaz Antey and few others.
    As for electronics, Ruselectronics, subsidiary of Rostec is not in such a great shape as main concern for development and implementation of microelectronics.
    Maybe company itself has too many different assets under one roof and breaking it into few more specialized organizations would be better ( aviation, radioelectronics, weapons, etc).

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    Post  Robert.V Sun Oct 23, 2022 12:50 am

    sepheronx wrote:I'll disagree with you here.

    Reason being that....

    Fair enough

    sepheronx wrote:

    Edit: what gives me hope is that when the going got tough, Russia acted fast. Industrial 3d printers, standard grade 3d printers and industrial CNC machines are being built en mass now.  Industries that were ignored got pumped hard and now Russia exports such tech they imported 99% before.  Also the other major one was Microbolometers where Russia imported from France and now they make both cooled, uncooled Thermal and now OLED micro displays for optronics and displays.  Only a few countries have this capability.  Quantum computing is already domestic and soon microprocessors.  But I agree with you where they could have been ahead in this game years ago.

    I also hope. But years of disappointment made me somewhat jaded especially with the current situation the way it is.

    Thermals from what I recall are still a problem at least in terms of mass production for high grade ones. Then again my info is dated by a year and a half or so.

    What I also hope is there will be quite a cut of heads in the military. To many chair warmers. A symptom from the mid 70's Soviet times.


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    Post  caveat emptor Sun Oct 23, 2022 2:05 am

    What is pretty concerning is that with new point system, that Mishustin promoted, import lobbyist managed to get many loopholes for what can be considered domestic  products and also for outright importation.
    Apparently Ivan Pokrovsky, president of Association of Russian Developers and Manufacturers of Electronics (ARPE), wrote a long article about work of the ministry of trade and industry and resigned in protest.
    So far, I've seen that Maxim Gorshenin and Mikhail Shigorin criticized said system and its failings. Shigorin even named
    Alexander Galitsky, who worked for Sun Microsystems and IBM, and CEO of Yadro. Galitsky is also Ukrainian, but I'm not sure how relevant is that. Wikipedia entry about Galitsky:
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Galitsky

    Ivan Pokrovsky's article:

    https://dzen.ru/media/id/63399d90b14c591cab6b4247/minpromtorg-impotent-da-63399daf41a69840bd871ed7


    Last edited by caveat emptor on Sun Oct 23, 2022 5:49 am; edited 2 times in total

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    Post  caveat emptor Sun Oct 23, 2022 2:14 am

    Reading more about Russian microelectronics industry i got the feeling that certain pro-Western or pro-import circles are fighting with all their might against further investment into Elbrus processors and surrounding ecosystem.
    It makes sense as they have vested interests. I wouldn't exclude that IBM and Intel are backing them up, as well as US government in view of current situation.
    This is just personal opinion and i might be totally wrong here
    Reminder that Elbrus family was developed as a pet project of the military during '70s, as they wanted secure processors for their needs.

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    Post  sepheronx Sun Oct 23, 2022 3:05 am

    caveat emptor wrote:Reading more about Russian microelectronics industry i got the feeling  that certain pro-Western or pro-import circles are fighting with all their might against further investment into Elbrus processors and surrounding ecosystem.
    It makes sense as they have vested interests. I wouldn't exclude that IBM and Intel are backing them up, as well as US government in view of current situation.
    This is just personal opinion and i might be totally wrong here
    Reminder that Elbrus family was developed as a pet project of the military during '70s, as they wanted secure processors for their needs.

    The ones fighting against it are those pushing Risc-V which is indeed a good architecture.  Elbrus is also good too but very specific and isn't as friendly to code with apparently and most people complain about lack of a proper compiler.

    Others with skin in the game have ARM, MIPS and RISC-V.  None if them are IBM's powerPC Arch.  Only one in the list is MCST with the SPARC processors R-50,1000 & 2000 which is under Oracle.

    China themselves are going with known architectures too. If both parties can create processors under similar architectures or easily translate between each other it makes sense. My understanding Elbrus-2000 Arch isn't quite that. Very capable and powerful and really only success of the VLIW line of processors but.....

    Who knows and we will see what events unfold. Right now the popular chip is the MIPS from Baikal and it's ARM too. Along with Elvees with its ARM and Matrix Arch.

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    Post  GarryB Sun Oct 23, 2022 11:21 am

    If Russia had  mature 65 nm up to 90 nm along with 200mm and 300mm fabs. You can bet you're ass there would have been orders from abroad especially from japan.  

    But they didn't... what they do have is ten years of further development in technology and materials research that might mean what they end up with is much better than anything they could have developed 10 years ago.

    It is like saying the Mi-28A was first shown 30 years ago... if they had pulled finger and developed it properly then they could already be in service in enormous numbers... but would they be as good as the current Mi-28NM started relatively recently?

    The Russian top priority should always be with their military and they should also be looking at what consumer and civilian market they can service with those military developments and vice versa to save money and magnify the effect of money invested in anything at all.

    Currently Russian government is getting printers from China. while Russia itself has 2 printer manufacturers.

    They clearly need an oversight organisation that examines such cases to make sure Russian companies get work, but equally they need to be able to provide the volume required and the features needed, so foreign sales can still happen... and actually make sense if those Russian companies think they will automatically get the sales without having to even try... having a fat lazy local company who expects to win contracts because it is based in Russia is not good either.

    I agree if they can't provide what is needed they can perhaps subcontract the work to do some of the jobs to earn money and get experience and upskill and improve their product range to compete better next time.

    Here in New Zealand the government decided to spend more money on rail to reduce the number of trucks on the roads and a local company put in a bid to make a few hundred rail cars and engines and things. The local bid was 125 million and was beaten by a Chinese company that bid 100 million.

    The government crowed about saving 25 million but ignored a few important factors... first of all different standards... when the rail cars arrived they had to be sent back and all the asbestos insulation removed... second thing they ignored was that part of the extra money in the local bid was to update the local workshops so they could maintain the carriages and engines over the next few decades and also have the local capacity to make more if they are needed, but the biggest factor the ignored was that spending 125 million to get what they wanted was 125 million that would be taxed in New Zealand and would go to kiwi workers who lived and paid tax in New Zealand, and as they were intended to spend rather more on the rail network having a workshop that could build more carriages and engines and also maintain them was useful and a good way to create good jobs in New Zealand.

    Many people don't realise that the cheapest is not always the best and investing in your own economy is often more important than just getting the best price.

    Sending the cars back to China to have the insulation done again means they didn't save 25 million at all.

    Because  work on building up semiconductor sector among other areas could have been started much earlier  by a decade plus in fact   There was money for this.

    The last ten years might have seen shifts in technology and materials... doing it now might be faster and cheaper and lead to a better product that can be mass produced in larger numbers easier.

    If they just kept up their development and invested like back when Mikron wanted to go to 28nm, then Russia would be there right now instead of having to wait 5 - 6 till this equipment is completed.

    Well ten years ago I think they would have just copied western technology.... I think they should go their own way and find new ways of doing it that are faster and cheaper and more productive.

    But if the current companies cannot meet demands then there should be a demand to get these companies what they need to expand production, rather than going the easiest route of buying from China.

    The problem is obvious.... Chinese printer companies supply printers around the world to huge markets so they can optimise for volume production for lots of little orders or big orders.

    For a Russian company to scale itself so it can fill a big order quickly might mean most of the time is it using 1% of its production capacity until it gets a big order from some Russian oil company or government department.

    Until those Russian printer companies have large markets with large volumes then ramping up production for big orders does not make sense and would be very inefficient.


    Edit: I think the best and smartest move was setting up a council specifically to make sure these stuff is being made in the economy. So yeah, it's moving to a command economy.

    It is critical to meet government and military needs first and business needs are not unimportant, but China is ideal for consumer products while Russian makers develop and branch out and grow.

    What irks me the most and especially the elite and leadership. It's the fact that they are not only corrupt but also in a way traitors. Just because they sent their money abroad along with their children. And tried time and time again to actually integrate with the west and it's elite. Putin included.

    Well those that did will now have their hidden foreign money pinched and donated to the Ukraine fund to kill Russians.


    In a actual well governed Russia the econamie would be even better and the country far more independent.

    Putin walked a tightrope of trying to cooperate with the west and looking after Russian interests and I think he did a good job... certainly better than any other leader on the planet most of whom throw their own populations under the bus to please the 1% in the US so the obscenely rich can become slightly richer.

    The attempts at cooperation bought time to upgrade and improve in quite a few areas and so if you started doing obvious things like make the things the Ukraine made that Russia bought the process of turning the Ukraine against Russia would have gone quicker perhaps leaving less time to deal with food production issues or mastering EO technology and composites.

    A Russia were "liberals" would be turned into fertilizer or like in the Soviet days rightly locked up in a mental ward. And hat list can go on and on.

    There are people everywhere that only think of themselves, that is just a fact of life... it is like saying we want a society with no billionaires.... the best way to improve the quality of any society is to narrow the gap between the richest and the poorest... preferably by lifting up the poor.

    Only a few countries have this capability. Quantum computing is already domestic and soon microprocessors. But I agree with you where they could have been ahead in this game years ago.

    The problem for the external observer is that we don't see any ground breaking new technologies they also invested in... we don't know much about their new types of nuclear reactors or the nuclear propulsion for space tugs or cruise missiles, we don't know much about their new photonic radar technology they are working on too... we have barely scratched the surface... I do think they need to invest in bio weapon technology simply to be able to fend for themselves better the next time something happens and also working on new medicines that are not dangerous and don't have serious side effects that cure rather than treat patients would be valuable investments along with medical departments in government that test the nutrition of food on sale commercially that is independent of the companies that make the food so we are  not relying on the maker to prove it is safe or healthy.

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    Post  kvs Sun Oct 23, 2022 5:55 pm

    Russian metal 3D printers are world class and able to use different types of metal and alloys in the same process. But the logic being pimped in this thread is that Russia is all about losers doing loser things. There is clearly a contradiction with reality and objective facts indicate that the loser Russia pimps are full of shit.

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    Post  GunshipDemocracy Sun Oct 23, 2022 11:04 pm

    [quote]
    sepheronx wrote:
    caveat emptor wrote:Reading more about Russian microelectronics industry i got the feeling  that certain pro-Western or pro-import circles are fighting with all their might against further investment into Elbrus processors and surrounding ecosystem.
    It makes sense as they have vested interests. I wouldn't exclude that IBM and Intel are backing them up, as well as US government in view of current situation.
    This is just personal opinion and i might be totally wrong here
    Reminder that Elbrus family was developed as a pet project of the military during '70s, as they wanted secure processors for their needs.


    The ones fighting against it are those pushing Risc-V which is indeed a good architecture.  Elbrus is also good too but very specific and isn't as friendly to code with apparently and most people complain about lack of a proper compiler.





    TO me the question is , can cutting from the west stop/harm development of (ARM stopped licensing to Russia its tech) RISC-V architecture in Russia ? if not then ... why not to keep 2 architectures ELBRUS (it already has tons of existing compilers software in military applications) and Risc-V architectures?


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    Post  kvs Sun Oct 23, 2022 11:23 pm

    I do not think the problem is having more than one architecture, it is having the domestic fabrication capacity.

    This includes being able to optimize chip layout which is a substantial aspect of production. Russia needs a
    domestic CPU production line. Outsourcing to China is just as bad as outsourcing to Taiwan.

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    Post  sepheronx Sun Oct 23, 2022 11:27 pm

    GunshipDemocracy wrote:
    sepheronx wrote:
    caveat emptor wrote:Reading more about Russian microelectronics industry i got the feeling  that certain pro-Western or pro-import circles are fighting with all their might against further investment into Elbrus processors and surrounding ecosystem.
    It makes sense as they have vested interests. I wouldn't exclude that IBM and Intel are backing them up, as well as US government in view of current situation.
    This is just personal opinion and i might be totally wrong here
    Reminder that Elbrus family was developed as a pet project of the military during '70s, as they wanted secure processors for their needs.


    The ones fighting against it are those pushing Risc-V which is indeed a good architecture.  Elbrus is also good too but very specific and isn't as friendly to code with apparently and most people complain about lack of a proper compiler.





    TO me the question is , can cutting from the west stop/harm development of  (ARM stopped licensing to Russia its tech) RISC-V architecture in Russia ? if not then ... why not to keep 2 architectures ELBRUS (it already has tons of existing compilers software in military applications) and Risc-V architectures?



    No because everyone reversed engineered each other for decades.

    The situation is what KVS said. Right now they can only produce on 65,90 and 180nm. And the 65nm is not in large amounts either. So they will have to produce in the mean time on 90nm of a newer chip design with current architecture, and do a mix of other sizes and also import from China and Malaysia.

    That is fine mind you, but should never be reliant on import of it or outsourcing it. The Russians plan is to produce in house so they are doing what they should have years ago.

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    Post  GunshipDemocracy Mon Oct 24, 2022 1:53 am

    sepheronx wrote:
    No because everyone reversed engineered each other for decades.


    great, then there's no problem with having those 2 architectures being developed in parallel


    comrade seph wrote:
    The situation is what KVS said. Right now they can only produce on 65,90 and 180nm.  And the 65nm is not in large amounts either.  So they will have to produce in the mean time on 90nm of a newer chip design with current architecture, and do a mix of other sizes and also import from China and Malaysia.

    That is fine mind you, but should never be reliant on import of it or outsourcing it.  

    i can only agree with you in 100%


    The Russians plan is to produce in house so they are doing what they should have years ago.

    They should but it was impossible for many reasons external/internal/financial. In the first place they, should not dissolve Soviet Union but transform Gorbatchov "destroyka" to the system that is in China now. But t this is not discussion to this forum Twisted Evil Twisted Evil Twisted Evil

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    Post  sepheronx Mon Oct 24, 2022 2:34 am

    I kind of agree to a certain amount to what Lancelot suggested in working in tandem with China. But the issue is, as seen with projects where Russia worked with China, is they are notorious for stealing or demanding entire knowledge base of the product. Like what they attempted with the CR929 plane.

    I would wager ordering chips of an open architecture under a Russian brand in the current time till they can localize production of it, isn't a bad idea. Like a Baikal ARM processor or MIPS processor.  But beyond that, I wouldn't do any kind of fabrication of Elbrus or Elvees chips in China as they will simply just attempt to steal everything regarding it.

    That said, I'm glad at least Russia is now taking this serious. Rosatom and Rostec are two corporations in heavy need of these modern chips. Roscosmos tries to do most of what it needs but even then they need some modern chips too.

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    Post  Robert.V Mon Oct 24, 2022 12:58 pm

    kvs wrote:   But the logic being pimped in this thread is that Russia is all about losers doing loser things.    There is clearly a contradiction with reality and objective facts indicate that the loser Russia pimps are full of shit.


    That´s a lovely straw man you built. Because, nothing close to this was being suggested or even fucking talked about.

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    Post  caveat emptor Mon Oct 24, 2022 5:36 pm

    Robert.V wrote:That´s a lovely straw man you built. Because, nothing close to this was being suggested or even fucking talked about.
    Judging by most of his posts made here, he is just an angry person and that is his style.

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