"That's why we are extremely sensitive to power issues when designing our chips," according to FyreStorm's senior director of VLSI engineering, George Serhan. "Adding Sequence to our design flow was a no-brainer."
Adding Sequence's PowerTheater for power analysis and optimization, and CoolTime for power-grid design, to FyreStorm's Cadence's flow has been easy, Serhan said, thanks to the high level of integration between the tools.
"I have been quite impressed with the results," Serhan said. "PowerTheater identified ways to improve our clock design resulting in significant power savings allowing us to meet stringent power efficiency specifications; in addition we have saved chip area and improved power-grid performance using CoolTime."
"Young, innovative companies such as FyreStorm are setting the performance bar higher than ever," said Vic Kulkarni, Sequence president and CEO. "Our process of continuous improvement in EDA power analysis and optimization helps keeps our customers at the leading edge of SoC design."
PowerTheater/CoolTime New, Improved
Sequence recently announced updates to both PowerTheater and CoolTime. PowerTheater now features gate-level time-based power analysis, providing a view of power dissipation as a function of time within a waveform display. The analysis also provides average power estimation numbers 2-4X faster than the existing flow. PowerTheater is now supported on the Intel Xeon platform as well running the SUSE 9 and RHEL 3 operating systems. It also provides strong links to CoolTime and other dynamic voltage drop tools for generating state information based on highest activity or highest power.
CoolTime's dynamic analysis run time has been improved by 2-4X with no impact on accuracy. A 14 million gate design now takes about three hours (as compared to 10 hours previously) to complete a dynamic analysis run on an Opteron machine. In addition, this design takes less than 16G of memory (2X less than the earlier version).
CoolTime also features an improved extraction engine, PRX, which improves the GDS extraction runtime by 3-5X. In addition, CoolTime now features voltage drop optimization (VDO) for individual blocks or full chips. CoolTime's VDO consists of decoupling capacitor insertion into empty and/or consolidated spaces, and hotspot spreading, in which peak power is redistributed by moving victim or aggressor instances a short distance. CoolTime also features "SpeedView," a new layout viewer with electromigration and voltage drop "wizards" that display results as overlays on top of the original design so data can be analyzed as much as 10X faster. This capability helps in debugging power grid failures.
FyreStorm ( www.FyreStormIC.com), founded in 2002 by a team of industry experts and veterans, is a venture-funded fabless semiconductor company focused on designing an innovative power solution to enable a new generation of "unplugged" electronics. The company's products will enable smaller, lighter, more power-efficient and less costly consumer and computer products while also improving their capabilities.
Sequence Design, Inc. enables system-on-chip designers to bring higher-performance and power-aware nanometer integrated circuits quickly to fabrication. Sequence's power and signal-integrity software give its more than 125 customers the competitive advantage necessary to excel in aggressive technology markets, despite demanding complexity and time-to-market issues of nanometer design.
Sequence has worldwide development and field service operations. The company was recently named by Reed Electronics as one of the top 10 companies to watch in the electronics industry. Sequence is privately held. Sequence is a member of the ARM/Artisan Connected Community(TM), Cadence Design Systems' Connections(TM), Mentor Graphics' Open Door(TM), and Virage Logic VIP(TM) partnership programs. Additional information is available at sequencedesign.com.
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Sequence Public Relations Jim Lochmiller, 541-821-3438 Email Contact