Analysis of high performance interconnect in SoC with distributed switches and multiple issue bus protocols




Narayanasetty, Bhargavi

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In a System on a Chip (SoC), interconnect is the factor limiting Performance, Power, Area and Schedule (PPAS). Distributed crossbar switches also called as Switching Central Resources (SCR) are often used to implement high performance interconnect in a SoC – Network on a Chip (NoC). Multiple issue bus protocols like AXI (from ARM), VBUSM (from TI) are used in paths critical to the performance of the whole chip. Experimental analysis of effects on PPAS by architectural modifications to the SCRs is carried out, using synthesis tools and Texas Instruments (TI) in house power estimation tools. The effects of scaling of SCR sizes are discussed in this report. These results provide a quick means of estimation for architectural changes in the early design phase. Apart from SCR design, the other major domain, which is a concern, is deadlocks. Deadlocks are situations where the network resources are suspended waiting for each other. In this report various kinds of deadlocks are classified and their respective mitigations in such networks are provided. These analyses are necessary to qualify distributed SCR interconnect, which uses multiple issue protocols, across all scenarios of transactions. The entire analysis in this report is carried out using a flagship product of Texas Instruments. This ASIC SoC is a complex wireless base station developed in 2010- 2011, having 20 major cores. Since the parameters of crossbar switches with multiple issue bus protocols are commonly used in SoCs across the semiconductor industry, this reports provides us a strong basis for architectural/design selection and validation of all such high performance device interconnects. This report can be used as a seed for the development of an interface tool for architects. For a given architecture, the tool suggests architectural modifications, and reports deadlock situations. This new tool will aid architects to close design problems and bring provide a competitive specification very early in the design cycle. A working algorithm for the tool development is included in this report.



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