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VLSI design methodology

The development of FIRST was a significant step in the field of silicon compilation. With FIRST, bit-serial signal processing systems could be rapidly implemented in silicon by high-level designers without requiring layout expertise. This thesis explores extensions to the compiler, but the methodology and techniques are not specific to FIRST and could be used in the more general VLSI arena. One major theme is the use of process independent layout, allowing the rapid update of a cell library to current state of the art process rules. After surveying other layout strategies, one particular layout style, gate matrix, was evaluated through the manual layout of a bit-serial, two's complement, multiplier utilising novel architectural features. The operation and architectural features of the multiplier are described, as these features were to be incorporated as options in newly generated cell libraries. SECOND, a full span silicon compiler; taking the high-level input description of FIRST but synthesizing layout to a process independent form (gate matrix) was developed using ideas gained from the manual assembly procedure. SECOND maintains and extends the hierarchy of FIRST using different assembly strategies for differing levels of hierarchy in the synthesis procedure. The hierarchy is described and the placement, routing and assembly procedures of the new elements of the hierarchy are covered. The automation tools used to generate the gate matrix layout of the lowest hierarchy level of SECOND are covered in a separate chapter. Using the same concepts of hierarchy, a tool ENGEN which transforms FIRST intermediate code to a gate level network description in HILO is also described as an alternative to SECOND in the search for process independence. The thesis ends with a suggestion of a bit-serial/bit-parallel frame for encouraging the acceptability of bit-serial systems.
Date January 1990
CreatorsMhar, Javeed I.
PublisherUniversity of Edinburgh
Source SetsEthos UK
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeElectronic Thesis or Dissertation

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