Custom Designs, Custom Problems


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss power optimization with Oliver King, CTO at Moortec; João Geada, chief technologist at Ansys; Dino Toffolon, senior vice president of engineering at Synopsys; Bryan Bowyer, director of engineering at Mentor, a Siemens Business; Kiran Burli, senior director of marketing for Arm's Physical Design Group; Kam Kittrell, senior product management group d... » read more

For AI Hardware, Power Optimization Starts With Software And Ends At Silicon


Artificial intelligence (AI) processing hardware has emerged as a critical piece of today’s tech innovation. AI hardware architecture is very symmetric with large arrays of up to thousands of processing elements (tiles), leading to billion+ gate designs and huge power consumption. For example, the Tesla auto-pilot software stack consumes 72W of power, while the neural network accelerator cons... » read more

Low-Power Analog


Analog circuitry is usually a small part of a large SoC, but it does not scale in the same way as digital circuitry under Moore's Law. The power consumed by analog is becoming an increasing concern, especially for battery-operated devices. At the same time, little automation is available to help analog designers reduce consumption. "Newer consumer devices, like smartphones and wearables, alo... » read more

Utilizing Clock-Gating Efficiency To Reduce Power In RTL Designs


With the advent of the consumer era and the popularity of mobile applications, power optimization is the mantra of the day. Designers go through several iterations to optimize power in order to achieve their power budgets. The average Clock-Gating Efficiency for a design is a much better indicator of dynamic power consumption because it is a measure of both how many and how long registers are g... » read more

Power Optimization Strategies Widen


An increasing amount of electronic content in new and existing markets is creating different and sometimes competing demands for power optimization. For the past decade, EDA has been driven by the mobile phone industry, where the emphasis is on better power analysis and optimization tools to reduce power consumption and extend battery life. While energy efficiency continues to improve, other... » read more

Estimating Power And Performing Optimization


Power analysis and optimization have gained importance over the last few years. During this time it has become obvious how critical it is to use realistic payloads to accurately estimate power and perform optimization tasks. Designers have a range of different objectives and concerns when it comes to power. On one side, a team wants to ensure that the average power of their chip is low enough t... » read more

What Does “Low Power Optimization” Mean To You?


As I was researching some new low power capabilities, I asked this question of nearly every designer I met: “How important is low power optimization?” It turns out that it’s a pretty useless question because of course it’s important to just about everyone. After all, reducing power improves reliability and reduces design costs. And for chips destined for certain applications, such as mo... » read more

Cars, Security, And HW-SW Co-Design


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss parallel hardware/software design with Johannes Stahl, director of product marketing, prototyping and FPGA, [getentity id="22035" e_name="Synopsys"]; [getperson id="11411" comment="Bill Neifert"], director of models technology, [getentity id="22186" comment="ARM"]; Hemant Kumar, director of ASIC design, Nvidia; and Scott Constable, senior member of ... » read more

Accuracy Is Relative


I've been doing some thinking on the concept of accuracy lately in my article, Does Power Analysis Need To Be Accurate? And, I’ve come to the conclusion that there isn’t a single conclusion to be had. Accuracy is very relative to the task at hand, as well as the use case, and the very specific power requirements. And maybe the focus shouldn't be always on the accuracy, but on what the chan... » read more

Does Power Analysis Need To Be Accurate?


The mere mention of accuracy in power analysis and optimization today can trigger a contentious discussion, even among typically reserved engineers. What is needed and where? Which tools are truly as accurate as claimed? And how much accuracy is actually needed for power analysis, [getkc id="112" kc_name="estimation"], and optimization? First of all, the accuracy required really depends o... » read more

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