Parallel Architectures for Many-Core Systems-On-Chip in Deep Sub-Micron Technology

Bortolotti, Daniele (2014) Parallel Architectures for Many-Core Systems-On-Chip in Deep Sub-Micron Technology , [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Ingegneria elettronica, informatica e delle telecomunicazioni, 26 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/6429.
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Despite the several issues faced in the past, the evolutionary trend of silicon has kept its constant pace. Today an ever increasing number of cores is integrated onto the same die. Unfortunately, the extraordinary performance achievable by the many-core paradigm is limited by several factors. Memory bandwidth limitation, combined with inefficient synchronization mechanisms, can severely overcome the potential computation capabilities. Moreover, the huge HW/SW design space requires accurate and flexible tools to perform architectural explorations and validation of design choices. In this thesis we focus on the aforementioned aspects: a flexible and accurate Virtual Platform has been developed, targeting a reference many-core architecture. Such tool has been used to perform architectural explorations, focusing on instruction caching architecture and hybrid HW/SW synchronization mechanism. Beside architectural implications, another issue of embedded systems is considered: energy efficiency. Near Threshold Computing is a key research area in the Ultra-Low-Power domain, as it promises a tenfold improvement in energy efficiency compared to super-threshold operation and it mitigates thermal bottlenecks. The physical implications of modern deep sub-micron technology are severely limiting performance and reliability of modern designs. Reliability becomes a major obstacle when operating in NTC, especially memory operation becomes unreliable and can compromise system correctness. In the present work a novel hybrid memory architecture is devised to overcome reliability issues and at the same time improve energy efficiency by means of aggressive voltage scaling when allowed by workload requirements. Variability is another great drawback of near-threshold operation. The greatly increased sensitivity to threshold voltage variations in today a major concern for electronic devices. We introduce a variation-tolerant extension of the baseline many-core architecture. By means of micro-architectural knobs and a lightweight runtime control unit, the baseline architecture becomes dynamically tolerant to variations.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
Bortolotti, Daniele
Dottorato di ricerca
Scuola di dottorato
Scienze e ingegneria dell'informazione
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
many-core reliability variability energy-efficiency virtual platform virtualsoc hw/sw design
Data di discussione
9 Maggio 2014

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