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Portland State University

Theses/Dissertations

Asynchronous circuits

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Drafting In Self-Timed Circuits, Christopher Lee Cowan Aug 2019

Drafting In Self-Timed Circuits, Christopher Lee Cowan

Dissertations and Theses

Intervals between data items propagating in self-timed circuits are controlled by handshake signals rather than by a clock. In many self-timed designs, a trailing data item will catch up with a leading item or token, even when it trails by thousands of gate delays. This effect, called "drafting," can be seen in many of the self-timed designs, e.g., GasP, Mousetrap, Click, and Micropipeline. The purpose of this dissertation is to reveal the circuit mechanism of drafting in self-timed circuits typically used in FIFO stages. Drafting is usually considered to be incidental to the operation of self-timed circuits since interval ...


Silicon Compilation And Test For Dataflow Implementations In Gasp And Click, Swetha Mettala Gilla Jan 2018

Silicon Compilation And Test For Dataflow Implementations In Gasp And Click, Swetha Mettala Gilla

Dissertations and Theses

Many modern computer systems are distributed over space. Well-known examples are the Internet of Things and IBM's TrueNorth for deep learning applications. At the Asynchronous Research Center (ARC) at Portland State University we build distributed hardware systems using self-timed computation and delay-insensitive communication. Where appropriate, self-timed hardware operations can reduce average and peak power, energy, latency, and electromagnetic interference. Alternatively, self-timed operations can increase throughput, tolerance to delay variations, scalability, and manufacturability.

The design of complex hardware systems requires design automation and support for test, debug, and product characterization.

This thesis focuses on design compilation and test support for ...


Quadded Gasp: A Fault Tolerant Asynchronous Design, Kristopher S. Scheiblauer Feb 2017

Quadded Gasp: A Fault Tolerant Asynchronous Design, Kristopher S. Scheiblauer

Dissertations and Theses

As device scaling continues, process variability and defect densities are becoming increasingly challenging for circuit designers to contend with. Variability reduces timing margins, making it difficult and time consuming to meet design specifications. Defects can cause degraded performance or incorrect operation resulting in circuit failure. Consequently test times are lengthened and production yields are reduced.

This work assess the combination of two concepts, self-timed asynchronous design and fault tolerance, as a possible solution to both variability and defects. Asynchronous design is not as sensitive to variability as synchronous, while fault tolerance allows continued functional operation in the presence of defects ...