Reactive clocks with variability-Tracking jitter

Jordi Cortadella, Luciano Lavagno, Pedro Lopez, Marc Lupon, Alberto Moreno, Antoni Roca, Sachin S. Sapatnekar

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

8 Scopus citations


The growing variability in nanoelectronic devices, due to uncertainties from the manufacturing process and environmental conditions (power supply, temperature, aging), requires increasing design guardbands, forcing circuits to work with conservative clock frequencies. Various schemes for clock generation based on ring oscillators and adaptive clocks have been proposed with the goal to mitigate the power and performance losses attributable to variability. However, there has been no systematic analysis to quantify the benefits of such schemes and no signoff method has been proposed for timing correctness. This paper presents and analyzes a Reactive Clocking scheme with Variability-Tracking Jitter (RClk) that uses variability as an opportunity to reduce power by continuously adjusting the clock frequency to the varying environmental conditions, and thus, reduces guardband margins significantly. Power can be reduced between 20% and 40% at iso-performance and performance can be boosted by similar amounts at iso-power. Additionally, energy savings can be translated to substantial advantages in terms of reliability and thermal management. More importantly, the technology can be adopted with minimal modifications to conventional EDA flows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 33rd IEEE International Conference on Computer Design, ICCD 2015
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781467371650
StatePublished - Dec 14 2015
Event33rd IEEE International Conference on Computer Design, ICCD 2015 - New York City, United States
Duration: Oct 18 2015Oct 21 2015

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 33rd IEEE International Conference on Computer Design, ICCD 2015


Other33rd IEEE International Conference on Computer Design, ICCD 2015
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew York City

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 IEEE.


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