INVITED: Toward an open-source digital flow: First learnings from the OpenROAD project

Tutu Ajayi, Vidya A. Chhabria, Mateus Fogaça, Soheil Hashemi, Abdelrahman Hosny, Andrew B. Kahng, Minsoo Kim, Jeongsup Lee, Uday Mallappa, Marina Neseem, Geraldo Pradipta, Sherief Reda, Mehdi Saligane, Sachin S. Sapatnekar, Carl Sechen, Mohamed Shalan, William Swartz, Lutong Wang, Zhehong Wang, Mingyu WooBangqi Xu

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

55 Scopus citations


We describe the planned Alpha release of OpenROAD, an opensource end-to-end silicon compiler. OpenROAD will help realize the goal of "democratization of hardware design", by reducing cost, expertise, schedule and risk barriers that confront system designers today. The development of open-source, self-driving design tools is in and of itself a "moon shot" with numerous technical and cultural challenges. The open-source flowincorporates a compatible open-source set of tools that span logic synthesis, floorplanning, placement, clock tree synthesis, global routing and detailed routing. The flow also incorporates analysis and support tools for static timing analysis, parasitic extraction, power integrity analysis, and cloud deployment. We also note several observed challenges, or "lessons learned", with respect to development of open-source EDA tools and flows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 56th Annual Design Automation Conference 2019, DAC 2019
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
ISBN (Electronic)9781450367257
StatePublished - Jun 2 2019
Event56th Annual Design Automation Conference, DAC 2019 - Las Vegas, United States
Duration: Jun 2 2019Jun 6 2019

Publication series

NameProceedings - Design Automation Conference
ISSN (Print)0738-100X


Conference56th Annual Design Automation Conference, DAC 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityLas Vegas

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Andreas Olofsson of DARPA for providing guidance. We also thank Colin Holehouse, Matteo Coltella and David Urquhart of ARM, and project PIs and participants at Qualcomm, UC San Diego and the University of Michigan. The OpenROAD project is supported by DARPA (HR0011-18-2-0032). Mr. Fogaça’s studies are financed by the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior - Brasil (CAPES) - Finance Code 001.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Copyright held by the owner/author(s). Publication rights licensed to ACM.


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