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A Hierarchical Global Wiring Algorithm for Custom Chip Design

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6 Author(s)
Luk, W.K. ; IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY, USA ; Sipala, P. ; Tamminen, M. ; Tang, D.
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We present a global wiring algorithm used in a top-down physical design environment, i.e., macros are laid out after global wiring is done, and wires are allowed to pass through macros (the wiring-through model). The floorplan of the chip is in the form of a slicing structure. The algorithm is based on a hierarchical scheme. The final result is obtained through a series of refinement as the problem is recursively decomposed into a set of small-sized problems and then solved efficiently. The worst-case run-time for an arbitrary slicing tree (totally skewed) is O(M 2 N). When the floorplan is represented by a balanced slicing tree, the run-time of the overall algorithm is O(MN), where M is the number of macros and N the number of nets. The algorithm has been implemented in the C language and is used for chip designs. Experiments on both real and randomly generated designs show that the hierarchical router performs equally well as a flat global router in terms of wire length and wireability handling, but much faster in run-time (at least 10 times for an example with 100 macros and 1000 nets, and the gap being even larger for bigger-size problems).

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Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:6 ,  Issue: 4 )