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Magma tools cut clock tree power draw by 25%

Posted: 05 Mar 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IC analysis? EDA tools? Spice? Magma? Talus?

Magma Design Automation Inc. has introduced a pair of low-power IC implementation and analysis tools that the company claims have been shown to reduce power consumption in nanometer ICs by 25 percent.

The products, Talus Power and Quartz Rail, integrated with Magma's Talus implementation platform's architecture, scalability and automation, will enable designers to reduce the amount of time it takes to develop low-power, multimillion-gate nanometer designs, according to Magma.

Gas Station method
Talus Power offers advanced power optimization and management techniques and a Gas Station methodology making it easier to handle complex floor plans in a multi-Vdd design flow, Magma said. Gas Stations automatically handle top-level nets that cut across switched domains by creating mini islands for the repeaters and buffers, the company said. Clock tree power reduction is achieved through a variety of optimization techniques such as power-aware buffering, sizing and flop clustering, physically aware clock-gate cloning and un-cloning, activity-based clock gating, optimal buffer insertion and balancing to minimize capacitance and minimizing skew buffers, Magma said.

Quartz Rail integrates power analysis and planning, dynamic voltage-drop analysis, voltage-drop-induced delay analysis, thermal analysis and electromigration analysis on rail wires and vias, according to Magma. Quartz Rail has a built-in Spice engine for on-the-fly characterization of standard cells and memories, Magma said.

Sign-off-quality analysis
"Designing to the strict power requirements of high-performance systems and consumer electronics and cellphones is incredibly difficult, time consuming and costly," said Kam Kittrell, general manager of Magma's design implementation business unit, in a statement. "Unlike any other low-power design solution, Magma's provides sign-off-quality power analysis and addresses power problems throughout the RTL-to-GDSII flow, not just during back-end design. This, coupled with advanced low-power techniques, allows Magma software to dramatically reduce power, turnaround time and development costs."

Both Talus Power and Quartz Rail products support the Unified Power Format (UPF) as defined by Accellera's UPF Technical subcommittee and are available today, Magma said.

- Dylan McGrath
EE Times

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