NEC Deploys Sequence Columbus-AMS for Ultra High Speed Digital Designs

Sequence Design’s Columbus-AMS is a mainstay in the analog engineering community, but is also proving to be productive for the high-speed digital designers at NEC Corporation in Japan. According to Koji Saga, Department Manager, CAD Engineering Department, Computers Division, NEC Corporation, his group has been using Columbus for inductance extraction in ultra-high-speed digital designs to accurately analyze clock delays.

NEC has taped out several multi-million gate designs using Columbus extraction technology, one of which is their 65nm SX-9 supercomputer processor, capable of reaching an astounding 102.4GFLOPS per single core. The NEC SX-9 is the world’s fastest vector supercomputer.

According to Saga, this device has a clock frequency of more than 1GHz that is delivered to a very large area with minimum clock skew. “When analyzing the clock signal for resistance and capacitance alone, we did not achieve satisfactory silicon correlation,” Saga said. “Working with Sequence, we developed a new clock analysis methodology taking inductance into account as well, significantly improving our results and overall quality of the design.”

“For aggressive, high-speed digital designs like NEC’s, portions of digital designs may also require inductance analysis,” said Rob Mathews, Sequence vice president of extraction products. “This lets the designer tighten the clock specs by analyzing the clock tree and including the effects of inductance.”

The Columbus extraction product family is part of Sequence’s Design-for-Power (DFP) solutions lineup which also includes PowerTheater, CoolPower, CoolCheck, and CoolTime. The Sequence DFP flow provides RTL power management feeding physical implementation tuned to accelerate low power design closure. Columbus provides both a foundation for the company’s DFP solutions for SoCs and the industry’s leading RLC parasitic extraction tool for high-performance digital and analog/mixed-signal designs. It also includes power-rail extraction and analysis tools for full-custom and SoC designs.

About NEC Corporation
NEC Corporation is one of the world’s leading providers of Internet, broadband network and enterprise business solutions dedicated to meeting the specialized needs of its diverse and global base of customers. NEC delivers tailored solutions in the key fields of computer, networking and electronic devices, by integrating its technical strengths in IT and Networks, and by providing advanced semiconductor solutions through NEC Electronics Corporation. The NEC Group employs more than 150,000 people worldwide.

About Sequence
Sequence Design accelerates the ability of SoC designers to bring high-performance, power-aware ICs quickly to market. Sequence Design-For-Power solutions give customers the competitive advantage necessary to excel in aggressive technology markets.