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Hierarchical Multialgorithm Parallel Circuit Simulation

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4 Author(s)
Xiaoji Ye ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Texas A&M Univ., College Station, TX, USA ; Wei Dong ; Peng Li ; Nassif, S.

The emergence of multicore and many-core processors has introduced new opportunities and challenges to electronic design automation research and development. While the availability of increasing parallel computing power holds new promise to address many challenges in computer-aided design (CAD), the leverage of hardware parallelism can only be possible with a new generation of parallel CAD applications. In this paper, we propose a novel hierarchical multialgorithm (MA) parallel circuit simulation approach and its multicore implementation to expedite one of the most fundamental CAD applications: transistor-level transient circuit simulation. In our parallel circuit simulation approach, we create two levels of parallelism. At the higher level of parallelism, we start multiple simulation algorithms in parallel for a given simulation task. Interalgorithm communication is established to enable simulation algorithms to exchange useful information so that they could advance faster than without doing so. At the lower level of parallelism, each algorithm within the MA framework utilizes fine-grained parallel techniques such as parallel device evaluation and parallel matrix solve to fully harness the available hardware resources. By combining the two levels of parallelism, the computing power of the multicore or many-core processor platforms can be fully utilized to achieve superlinear speedup in circuit simulation.

Published in:

Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:30 ,  Issue: 1 )