Gate sizing for large cell-based designs

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Gate sizing for large cell-based designs
—Today, many chips are designed with predefined discrete cell libraries. In this paper we present a new fast gate sizing algorithm that works natively with discrete cell choices and realistic timing models. The approach iteratively assigns signal slew targets to all source pins of the chip and chooses discrete layouts of minimum size preserving the slew targets. Using slew targets instead of delay budgets, accurate estimates for the input slews are available during the sizing step. Slew targets are updated by an estimate of the local slew gradient. To demonstrate the effectiveness, we propose a new heuristic to estimate lower bounds for the worst path delay. On average, we violate these bounds by 6%. A subsequent local search decreases this gap quickly to 2%. This two-stage approach is capable of sizing designs with more than 5.8 million cells within 2.5 hours and thus helping to decrease turn-around times of multi-million cell designs.
Stephan Held
Added 20 May 2010
Updated 20 May 2010
Type Conference
Year 2009
Where DATE
Authors Stephan Held
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