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Design and Verification of Clock Domain Crossing Interfaces

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Design and Verification of Clock Domain Crossing Interfaces

Al-bayati, Zaid (2012) Design and Verification of Clock Domain Crossing Interfaces. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

The clock distribution network is an essential component in every synchronous digital system. The design of this network is becoming an increasingly sophisticated and difficult task due to the increasing logic capacity of chips and due to the fact that this network has to reach out to each and every memory element in the chip. Multiclock domain circuits with Clock Domain Crossing (CDC) interfaces are emerging
as an alternative to circuits with a global clock. The design of CDC interfaces is a challenging task due to the difficulty of dealing with two possibly unrelated clock
domains and the possibility of propagating metastability into the communicating blocks making CDC interfaces difficult to design and verify. In this work, we present
a hybrid FIFO-asynchronous method for constructing robust CDC interfaces. This method avoids the shortcomings of previous interfaces and provides reliable transfer
of data and control signals between different clock domains. A complete design is proposed, fully implemented using 90nm TSMC CMOS technology, and simulated using SPICE. Extensive simulations confirmed the robustness of the interface at different temperatures, different workloads, and varying frequency ratios. The reported implementation provides a maximum throughput of 606 Mitems/s. Moreover, we
also address the challenging task of the verification of CDC interfaces. Most RTL simulation tools available today are incapable of simulating these interfaces. In this
thesis, we present a framework for the formal verification of CDC interfaces. The framework explicitly models metastability by taking advantage of the unique features
of probabilistic model checking. The framework is applied to common CDC interfaces by verifying them using the PRISM model checker.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Engineering and Computer Science > Electrical and Computer Engineering
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Al-bayati, Zaid
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A. Sc.
Program:Electrical and Computer Engineering
Date:13 April 2012
Thesis Supervisor(s):Ait Mohamed, Otmane
ID Code:973794
Deposited By:ZAID ABDULKARIM AL-BAYATI
Deposited On:18 Jun 2012 11:06
Last Modified:18 Jun 2012 11:06
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