VSD Intern - DAC IP Design using Sky130 PDKs - Part 2

10-bit DAC full circuit design using Xschem and Sky130 PDKs


The webinar aims to circuit design of a 10-bit potentiometric Digital to Analog Converter, from scratch, using Xschem and Sky130 PDKs. The target is to design 10-bit potentiometric DAC with 3.3v analog voltage, 1.8v digital voltage and 1 off-chip external voltage reference. This is a follow-up webinar of "VSD Intern - DAC IP design using Sky130 PDKs - Part 1" conducted by Skandha Deepsita

In real world, most of the data available is in the form of analog in nature. We have two types of converters analog to digital converter and digital to analog converter. These two converting interfaces are essential to obtain the required operations of a processor to manipulate the data of digital electronic equipment and an analog electric equipment. Digital to Analog Converter (DAC) is a device that transforms digital data into an analog signal in order to interact with the real world. The digital signal is represented with a binary code, which is a combination of bits 0’s and 1’s. The digital data can be produced from a microprocessor, Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA), or Application Specified Integrated Circuit (ASIC). There are two commonly used DAC conversions – Weighed resistors method and R-2R ladder network method. Applications of a DAC: audio amplifier, video encoder, display electronics, data acquisition systems, calibration, Digital potentiometer.

This webinar will cover:

1) Tools Demo – Hands-on

  • Schematic Capture Tools
  • Spice Deck.
  • Interpretation of Spice netlist.
  • Spice Simulation

2) DAC Circuit Design

  • Sub-modules Required for a basic DAC
  • Selection of W/L for transistors
  • Selection of Cap Values
  • Selection of Resistor Values
  • Hierarchical Design of n-bit DAC

7) Design Simulations – Hands-on

  • Simulation of all circuits
  • Parameters evaluation

All the best and happy learning


  • Introduction
  • DAC Working principles and fundamentals
    • DAC Working
    • Hierarchical Design
    • Choice of Resistor
    • Choice of Switch
    • Calculations of resistance
  • From 2 bit to 10 bit DAC using Xschem and Sky130 PDKs
    • Xschem Switch Schematic - Part 1
    • Xschem Switch Schematic - Part 2
    • Xschem Switch complete
    • Xschem 2bit schematic
    • Xschem 10bit DAC schematic
  • Simulation result and performance analysis
    • Ngspice simulation
    • Ngspice Results
    • Transient Waveform
    • DNL INL Theory
  • Conclusion

Audience Profile

  • Beginner or fresher looking to start career in analog VLSI design
  • Professional Physical Design engineers looking to know more about IP design or IP blocks which they use as black box


  • VSD Intern - DAC IP Design using Sky130 PDKs - Part 1
  • VSD - Circuit design and SPICE simulations

What you'll learn

  1. Basic circuit design using real foundry data from Skywater technology
  2. DAC circuit design principle
  3. Basic CMOS switch fundamentals and design using Xschem
  4. Hierarchical 10-bit DAC design using 2-bit switches

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