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A general method to make multi-clock system deterministic

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3 Author(s)
Menghao Su ; Key Lab. of Comput. Syst. & Archit., Chinese Acad. of Sci., Beijing, China ; Yunji Chen ; Xiang Gao

Nondeterminism of multi-clock systems often complicates various system validation processes such as post silicon debugging and at-speed testing, which has brought many difficulties to system designers and testers. The major source of nondeterministic behaviors is clock domain crossing, because the clocks that determine the timing of events are sensitive to variations. In this paper, we propose a general method to eliminate the nondeterminism resulted from clock domain crossing. This method does not assume any specific relationship among the clocks. Instead, to adapt to various clock conditions, an automatic configuration procedure and a periodic error canceling mechanism, which only require trivial hardware support, are proposed by analyzing the deterministic boundaries theoretically. To demonstrate the applicability of our method in practice, we implement it on a FPGA platform. Experiment results validate that the performance loss brought by our method over conventional multi-clock FIFO is less than 2%.

Published in:

Design, Automation & Test in Europe Conference & Exhibition (DATE), 2010

Date of Conference:

8-12 March 2010