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The 18-way set-associative, single-ported 9 MB cache for the Itanium 2 processor uses 210 identical 48-kB sub-arrays with a 2.21-/spl mu/m/sup 2/ cell in a 130-nm 6-metal technology. The processor runs at 1.7 GHz at 1.35 V and dissipates 130 W. The 432-mm/sup 2/ die contains 592 M transistors, the largest transistor count reported for a microprocessor. This paper reviews circuit design and implementation details for the L3 cache data and tag arrays. The staged mode ECC scheme avoids a latency increase in the L3 tag. A high V/sub t/ implant improves the read stability and reduces the sub-threshold leakage.