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NextOp, Nvidia ink license deal for BugScope

Posted: 05 May 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:assertion synthesis? emulation verification? license agreement? RTL design?

NextOp Software, Inc. has signed a multilicense agreement allowing Nvidia to expand its use of the BugScope assertion synthesis product.

Nvidia supports assertions across its simulation, formal, and emulation verification environments as part of an assertion-based verification methodology and will use NextOp's BugScope assertion synthesis after significant changes in either the RTL design or its test suite.

According to NextOp, BugScope automatically generates assertion and coverage properties in standard assertion language formats. The assertions can detect potential RTL problems and localize the problems for quick debugging, and the functional coverage properties drive further test development.

The company believes that BugScope provides a world-class platform across simulation, formal and emulation flows to reduce the engineering time and effort needed to create high-quality coverage points and assertions while uncovering corner case bugs and identifying functional coverage holes.

Bugscope produced several results for Nvidia, including the generation of over 2,000 high-quality properties, including over 1,200 useful assertions and over 800 useful functional coverage properties for a production design block with over 100,000 lines of RTL code.

In addition, Bugscope met target quality and performance specifications, with BugScope-generated properties having been checked in as a part of Nvidia's test environment.

BugScope assertions and functional coverage properties incurred minimal, or less than two percent overhead to simulation regression.

More important, BugScope testpoints helped uncover RTL bugs during the process of reviewing the testpoints and from tests developed to target the test points.

As a result, BugScope assertion and coverage properties were found to be complementary to Nvidia's simulation, formal and emulation flows.

"The manual effort required to create an adequate number of high quality assertions and

functional coverage goals was a key challenge for us," said Stuart Oberman, director of ASIC engineering at Nvidia. "NextOp's assertion synthesis technology has helped us to address the challenge."

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