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This paper presents the design and experimental evaluation of a new type of irreversible energy recovery logic (ERL) families called complementary energy path adiabatic logic (CEPAL). It inherits the advantages of quasi-static ERL (QSERL) family, but is with improved driving ability and circuit robustness. The proposed logic style features no hold phase compared to its QSERL counterpart under the same operation conditions; thereupon no feedback keeper is required so that considerable improvements in area and power overheads can be achieved. Moreover, its throughput becomes twice as high as that of QSERL when their frequencies of power clocks (PCs) are identical. Results on the impact of variation on CEPAL are provided. Comparison between CEPAL and other known low-power logic style achieving iso-performance, namely, subthreshold logic is also given. In order to demonstrate workability of the newly developed circuit, an 8-bit shift register, designed in the proposed techniques, has been fabricated in a TSMC 0.18-mum CMOS process. Both simulation and measurement results verify the functionality of such a logic, making it suitable for implementing energy-aware and performance-efficient very-large scale integration (VLSI) circuitry.