Key Stream Corporation, designers of low-power wireless LAN chipsets, announced they are using Sequence Design’s PowerTheater to reduce power “when it counts,” early in the design cycle, at RTL.
“PowerTheater helps us understand and reduce power at RTL when it counts,” said Key Stream senior engineer, Hiroyuki Sakurai. “We get immediate feedback to help us understand the power profile early, allowing the team to examine multiple ‘what-if’ scenarios to optimize the chip architecture for low power.”
Key Stream is designing 802.11a/b/g wireless LAN chipsets, primarily for emerging portable applications where low-power requirements are critical. Sakurai related power-reduction results using PowerTheater for two blocks from a Key Stream design.
In the first block, the Key Stream design team achieved a 50 percent reduction in dynamic power with PowerTheater WattBots and linters, which automatically identified specific power-saving opportunities within the design. In the second example, Key Stream realized the advantages of RTL power analysis using the powerful debug environment of Power Theater over gate-level analysis: Specifically, RTL power analysis made it much simpler to examine tradeoffs between power and speed, a difficult and time-consuming challenge at gate level.
“PowerTheater shows us an easy-to-understand RTL tree, identifying the worst power offenders, so we can quickly spot which modules are a problem and then use WattBots to reduce power,” Sakurai said. “And utilizing PowerTheater’s peak and vector analysis makes it easy to find wasted power in the design.”
PowerTheater is the industry’s first RTL power analysis and management solution, with a singular ability to accurately estimate and reduce power at RTL. PowerTheater offers silicon-aware support for power management techniques, including voltage islands, mixed voltage threshold, power gating, and clock gating.
About Key Stream Corporation
Key Stream Corporation was established in December 2000 and has developed and brought to market wireless LAN communication baseband / MAC processors and RF chips supporting the IEEE 802.11a, 11b, and 11g standards. Key Stream supplies wireless LAN chipsets featuring wireless LAN communication processors with embedded CPUs and the company’s exclusive low-power technology, mainly for mobile embedded applications. Key Stream is unique in providing a comprehensive range of services including LSI design; firmware, driver, and application development; reference designs; and consulting.
Sequence Design accelerates the ability of SoC designers to bring high-performance, power-aware ICs quickly to market. Sequence’s power and signal-integrity software solutions give customers the competitive advantage necessary to excel in aggressive technology markets, despite the demanding complexity and time-to-market issues of nanometer design. Sequence serves over 150 customers worldwide, in application segments such as consumer, wireless, mobile computing, multimedia, cell phones, digital cameras, network-on-chip processors, and other power-sensitive markets. Sequence has worldwide development and field-service operations and is privately held.