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Circuit Tuning

Project Overview

Circuit tuning is an important part of integrated circuit design. Circuit tuning implies optimal sizing of transistors and wires to satisfy speed, noise, slew, power, beta ratio and loading criteria. Automated circuit tuning leads to better circuits, higher designer productivity and better understanding of the tradeoff involved in the design.

The Research Division has been involved for five years in two types of circuit tuning:

  • Static tuning: static tuning implies simultaneous optimization of all paths through the circuit on a static timing basis. No input patterns or vectors are required.

  • Dynamic tuning: dynamic tuning implies optimization of a circuit on the basis of dynamic or time-domain simulation. Input patterns are required and only those paths or quantities that are specified by the user are measured and optimized.
Both projects use SPECS, a fast event-driven, time-domain circuit simulator that accurately and efficiently computes electrical gradients or sensitivities which are necessary for optimization.

Related Links:

An easily readable article about IBM's circuit tuning efforts

Formal Tuning Animations

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