Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > A Matter Of Timing: New Strategies For Debugging Electronics

Abstract:
University of Wisconsin-Madison Electrical and Computer Engineering assistant professor Azadeh Davoodi is one of the first people to look at solutions for timing errors, and she has received a 2011 Faculty Early Career Development Award (CAREER) and grant to support her work.

A Matter Of Timing: New Strategies For Debugging Electronics

Madison, WI | Posted on February 2nd, 2011

The components that make up the integrated circuits in electronic devices are nano-sized and number in the billions. Sometimes "bugs" lurking in these complex systems can emerge and cause significant performance errors.

One category of electronic bugs that can occur after a chip is fabricated is known as timing errors. These errors can cause components to slow down and take longer to execute operations. As components continue to become smaller, the process of preventing and solving timing errors is becoming ever more complex, increasing the time it takes to send new products to market.

University of Wisconsin-Madison Electrical and Computer Engineering assistant professor Azadeh Davoodi is one of the first people to look at solutions for timing errors, and she has received a 2011 Faculty Early Career Development Award (CAREER) and grant to support her work.

Sponsored by the National Science Foundation, CAREER awards recognize faculty members who are at the beginning of their academic careers and have developed creative projects that effectively integrate advanced research and education.

Integrated circuits go through a rigorous testing process to find and correct bugs that can cause performance errors. However, the small size and sheer volume of components mean chips realistically cannot be entirely validated before fabrication.

"These errors occur, not because the circuit isn't functioning correctly, but because it fails to operate correctly at the desired speed," Davoodi says. "The nanoscale components in the chip are so small they can have weird physical behaviors that can only be detected after they are fabricated."

The validation process involves manually opening up a chip and examining billions of transistors, which is extremely time-consuming. Timing errors often are interdependent, meaning they emerge only when certain operations are performed together. This means testing for timing errors requires predicting the chip's behavior during a vast number of possible operations and combinations of operations.

It can several months to find errors and alter chips during the validation process. Most of this time is spent dealing with timing errors, so while timing errors are not the most common problems, they are a significant factor in delaying the time to market of new chips.

Davoodi's team will develop special sensor components that can be added to a chip's design, as well as methods to analyze measurements from the components. The new components will provide custom timing information for a particular chip design, allowing developers to predict, detect and even solve errors more quickly.

Instead of manually opening up and examining chips, developers could simply use data from the sensor components as a compact representation of important areas of the design that may be causing timing errors.

"We want to increase the timing observability inside the chip," Davoodi says.

In addition to supporting cutting-edge research, CAREER awards also fund innovative outreach programs. Along with developing technical coursework to introduce undergraduate students to sophisticated software programming, Davoodi is creating a unique course module that looks at some of the non-technical aspects of computer engineering that could inspire students to pursue the field.

The course module will be part of an introductory engineering course called Introduction to Society's Engineering Grand Challenges and explore the One Laptop Per Child project. The module will look at the societal, ethical and political implications of disseminating and using technology in developing countries.

"These aspects of the case study can be used as a different angle to interest students, particularly women, to get excited about engineering," Davoodi says.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Sandra Knisely
(608) 265-8592

Copyright © University of Wisconsin-Madison

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Host R&D Day on Emerging Pipeline of RNAi Therapeutics September 25th, 2018

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Host R&D Day on Emerging Pipeline of RNAi Therapeutics September 25th, 2018

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Reports Inducement Grants under NASDAQ Marketplace Rule 5635(c)(4) September 25th, 2018

Viral RNA sensing: Optical detection of picomolar concentrations of RNA using switches in plasmonic chirality September 21st, 2018

Academic/Education

The Institute of Applied Physics at the University of Tsukuba near Tokyo in Japan uses Deben's ARM2 detector to better understand catalytic reaction mechanisms June 27th, 2018

Powering the 21st Century with Integrated Photonics: UCSB-Led Team Selected for Demonstration of a Novel Waveguide Platform Which is Transparent Throughout the MWIR and LWIR Spectral Bands June 19th, 2018

SUNY Poly Professor Eric Lifshin Selected for ‘Fellow of the Microanalysis Society’ Position for Significant Contributions to Microanalysis June 13th, 2018

Grand Opening of UC Irvine Materials Research Institute (IMRI) to Spotlight JEOL Center for Nanoscale Solutions: Renowned Materials Scientists to Present at the 1st International Symposium on Advanced Microscopy and Spectroscopy (ISAMS) April 18th, 2018

Chip Technology

Researchers managed to prevent the disappearing of quantum information September 14th, 2018

New devices based on rust could reduce excess heat in computers: Physicists explore long-distance information transmission in antiferromagnetic iron oxide September 14th, 2018

New photonic chip promises more robust quantum computers September 14th, 2018

How a tetrahedral substance can be more symmetrical than a spherical atom: A new type of symmetry September 14th, 2018

Sensors

UT engineers develop first method for controlling nanomotors: Breakthrough for nanotechnology as UT engineers develop first method for switching the mechanical motion of nanomotors September 21st, 2018

Leti Announces EU Project to Develop Powerful, Inexpensive Sensors with Photonic Integrated Circuits: REDFINCH Members Initially Targeting Applications for Gas Detection and Analysis For Refineries & Petrochemical Industry and Protein Analysis for Dairy Industry September 19th, 2018

Rice U. lab probes molecular limit of plasmonics: Optical effect detailed in organic molecules with fewer than 50 atoms September 5th, 2018

Measuring the nanoworld September 4th, 2018

Nanoelectronics

How a tetrahedral substance can be more symmetrical than a spherical atom: A new type of symmetry September 14th, 2018

Laser sintering optimized for printed electronics: New study sheds (laser) light on the best means of laying down thin-film circuitry September 13th, 2018

September 5th, 2018

Rice U. lab probes molecular limit of plasmonics: Optical effect detailed in organic molecules with fewer than 50 atoms September 5th, 2018

Announcements

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Host R&D Day on Emerging Pipeline of RNAi Therapeutics September 25th, 2018

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Host R&D Day on Emerging Pipeline of RNAi Therapeutics September 25th, 2018

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Reports Inducement Grants under NASDAQ Marketplace Rule 5635(c)(4) September 25th, 2018

Viral RNA sensing: Optical detection of picomolar concentrations of RNA using switches in plasmonic chirality September 21st, 2018

Grants/Sponsored Research/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

UT engineers develop first method for controlling nanomotors: Breakthrough for nanotechnology as UT engineers develop first method for switching the mechanical motion of nanomotors September 21st, 2018

Halas wins American Chemical Society Award in Colloid Chemistry: Rice University nanophotonics pioneer honored for colloid research September 18th, 2018

New photonic chip promises more robust quantum computers September 14th, 2018

A Comprehensive Guide: The Future of Nanotechnology September 13th, 2018

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project