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Energy efficient asymmetrically ported register files

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2 Author(s)
Aggarwal, A. ; ECE Dept., Maryland Univ., College Park, MD, USA ; Franklin, M.

Power consumption in the register file (RF) forms a considerable fraction of the total power consumption in a chip. With increasing instruction window sizes and issue widths, RF power consumption will suffer a significantly large growth. Using the fact that many of the register values are small and require only a small number of bits for representation, we propose a novel asymmetrically ported RF (to reduce RF power consumption), in which some of the ports can only read/write small-sized values. We experiment with both monolithic and partitioned versions of asymmetrically ported RFs. The power savings in the RF with partitioned asymmetrically ported RF reach as high as 60%. These reductions in RF power consumption come with about 40% improvement in RF access-time and a negligible impact on IPC (instructions per cycle).

Published in:

Computer Design, 2003. Proceedings. 21st International Conference on

Date of Conference:

13-15 Oct. 2003