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Thermal Herding: Microarchitecture Techniques for Controlling Hotspots in High-Performance 3D-Integrated Processors

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2 Author(s)
Kiran Puttaswamy ; School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, ; Gabriel H. Loh

3D integration technology greatly increases transistor density while providing faster on-chip communication. 3D implementations of processors can simultaneously provide both latency and power benefits due to reductions in critical wires. However, 3D stacking of active devices can potentially exacerbate existing thermal problems. In this work, we propose a family of thermal herding techniques that (1) reduces 3D power density and (2) locates a majority of the power on the top die closest to the heat sink. Our 3D/thermal-aware microarchitecture contributions include a significance-partitioned datapath that places the frequently switching 16-bits on the top die, a 3D-aware instruction scheduler allocation scheme, an address memorization approach for the load and store queues, a partial value encoding for the L1 data cache, and a branch target buffer that exploits a form of frequent partial value locality in target addresses. Compared to a conventional planar processor, our 3D processor achieves a 47.9% frequency increase which results in a 47.0% performance improvement (min 7%, max 77% on individual benchmarks), while simultaneously reducing total power by 20% (min 15%, max 30%). Without our thermal herding techniques, the worst-case 3D temperature increases by 17 degrees. With our thermal herding techniques, the temperature increase is only 12 degrees (29% reduction in the 3D worst-case temperature increase)

Published in:

2007 IEEE 13th International Symposium on High Performance Computer Architecture

Date of Conference:

10-14 Feb. 2007