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Low Power Design of Precomputation-Based Content-Addressable Memory

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3 Author(s)
Shanq-Jang Ruan ; Nat. Taiwan Univ. of Sci. & Technol., Taipei ; Chi- Yu Wu ; Jui-Yuan Hsieh

Content-addressable memory (CAM) is frequently used in applications, such as lookup tables, databases, associative computing, and networking, that require high-speed searches due to its ability to improve application performance by using parallel comparison to reduce search time. Although the use of parallel comparison results in reduced search time, it also significantly increases power consumption. In this paper, we propose a Block-xor approach to improve the efficiency of low power precomputation-based CAM (PB-CAM). Through mathematical analysis, we found that our approach can effectively reduce the number of comparison operations by 50% on average as compared with the ones-count approach for 32-bit-long inputs. In our experiment, we used Synopsys Nanosim to estimate the power consumption in TSMC 0.35-mum CMOS technology. Compared with the ones-count PB-CAM system, the experimental results show that our proposed approach can achieve on average 30% in power reduction and 32% in power performance reduction. The major contribution of this paper is that it presents theoretical and practical proofs to verify that our proposed Block-xor PB-CAM system can achieve greater power reduction without the need for a special CAM cell design. This implies that our approach is more flexible and adaptive for general designs.

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Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:16 ,  Issue: 3 )