Past Awardee

Development of Support Tools for Electronic Design Automation

Jose Schutt-Aine

College: Engineering
Award year: 2000-2001

With the advent of fast processors and high frequency communication networks, the demand for more accurate computer-aided design (CAD) tools has increased dramatically. It is well recognized in the semiconductor industry that in order to continue affordable scaling and achieve gigahertz operation in the next century, the signal integrity bottleneck will have to be surmounted. This will not be accomplished without new design and modeling methodologies that account for low-level electromagnetic effects. These methods in turn will require robust visualization and software support to help designers. Efficient integration of electromagnetic and circuit-level tools and state-of-the-art visualization effects.

The objective of this effort is to integrate high-performance software support modules into existing point tools for the physical design of high-speed integrated circuits. These modules are to help the modeling and simulation tasks performed by the point tools by providing support functions such as grid generation, visualization, user interface and other types of rendition functions. It must be emphasized that the success of any CAD tool will heavily rest on the effectiveness of these support modules. The project will make use of robust library of electromagnetic tools, which will be combined with state-of-the art simulation techniques and provide a package with an efficient graphical user interface.

This tool will render the design of chips, package modules and printed circuit boards compliant with signal integrity requirements and will help strengthen interoperability between electromagnetic analysis and circuit theory.