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Interconnect Design Tool Addresses Virtual Prototyping Of PC Boards

With systems-on-a-chip and deep-submicron designs gaining momentum, the problem of simultaneous switching noise at the pc board and IC package levels becomes a fundamental problem with regard to signal integrity and EMI compliance. A pair of additions to the company's SPECCTRAQuest family of tools for interconnect design enable users to identify and solve power integrity problems during virtual prototyping of pc boards and complex IC packages.The SPECCTRAQuest powerplane building tool is a graphical design environment for modeling and analyzing simultaneous switching noise effects caused by faster silicon, higher-speed data buses, and multi-processor-based designs. It works in concert with the latest release of the EMControl tool, which has been extended beyond EMI design-rule checking to include differential-mode EMI radiation simulation. Together, the tools integrate pre-layout prediction with post-layout analysis of powerplane integrity.In the powerplane builder, designers gain a graphical environment in which they can predict powerplane stability, reduce noise hot spots to optimize signal performance, and validate the completed design for EMI compliance. The tool uses a 2D segmented circuit model approach that allows for accurate, rapid simulation by the SPECCTRAQuest time-domain circuit simulator for quick, "what-if" analysis of component placement strategies, power connector location(s), decoupling schemes, and more.The powerplane builder option to the SPECCTRAQuest interconnect designer and the EMControl product are available now for UNIX and Windows NT workstation platforms.


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