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« Prototyping based on reconfigurable platform for verification of system-on-chip ».

Author: A. Sasongko
Advisor: A.-A. Jerraya
Co-advisor: F. Rousseau
These de Doctorat Université Joseph-Fourier - Grenoble I
Speciality: Micro et Nano Electronique
Defense: October 15 2004
ISBN: ISBN 2-84813-054-7
Pages: 127

Abstract

The technology facilitates integration of many components onto a single chip to achieve performances and requirement needed by the application. The complexity of this system, called system-on-chip (SoC), tends to increase. The market of SoC is very competitive, so early appearance on the market is very important. Furthermore, the cost chip fabrication is very high so detecting a bug after fabrication can cause unacceptable overhead. These facts bring us to two problems addressed in this thesis: assuring the correctness of the system and accelerating the design process. After evaluating several verification techniques, we conclude that prototyping based on reconfigurable platform is a solution for the two problem mentioned. This prototyping allows us to verify rigorously the system since the speed which is very high. It allows us also to test the system in his operating environment. Furthermore, prototyping accelerate the design process by allowing development of several software layers before the chip fabrication. To obtain quickly a prototype from RTL description of the application, we propose a prototyping flow based on reconfigurable platform. This flow consists of four steps: assignment, configuration, adaptation, and code generation. In the assignment step, the designer associates each part of the architecture to the prototyping node of the prototyping platform. These associations indicate parts of the prototyping platform which will implement the architecture of the application. Configuration is reorganization of the reconfigurable platform. Adaptation consists of modify the application to satisfy characters of the platform. This step is needed when the platform can not be configured to adapt the requirements of the application. Finally, the code generation is standard process such as compilation, logic synthesis, and placement and route. This flow is validated by realizing two prototypes of application: VDSL and DivX. In these experiments, we used ARM Integrator platform. This platform consists of a main board, four processor boards, an FPGA board. These boards communicate each others through bus AMBA-AHB. A co-emulation experiment is also performed using this platform for exploring the difficulties and the advantages of this technique. The main advantage is that we can obtain the observability of simulation while preserving the speed of emulation. This PhD work shows that we can obtain a prototype using the proposed flow on a reconfigurable platform and also facilitate the development the software part to accelerate the design process. The configurability of the platform and the integration of the prototyping flow with design flow of the SoC are left as subjects to be treated

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