Electronic Design

Physical Synthesis Arrives For FPGAs

FPGA complexity is exploding, and RTL synthesis is running out of steam. With its Precision Physical Synthesis tool, Mentor Graphics melds the best of both RTL and physical synthesis. The result is shorter design-iteration times and more predictable timing closure. Built on a single data model that at once optimizes gate and interconnection delays, the tool fits seamlessly into Mentor's existing FPGA tool flow.

Reducing design iterations is critical as the ratio of interconnect delay relative to gate delay increases. FPGA designers need models based on placement and not statistical wireload models. Also, floorplanning is no longer sufficient, as proximity models don't ensure timing closure.

Precision Physical Synthesis brings physically aware algorithms such as placement modification, retiming, replication, and resynthesis to the table. The tool accounts for the FPGA vendors' design rules and uses to verify that logic or placement changes are correct. An interactive environment called PreciseView pins down timing problems and provides the know-how to fix them. The tool's PreciseTime incremental timing analysis permits cross-probing between RTL, schematic, physical, and timing views.

Precision Physical Synthesis costs $35,000 and is available now. Precision RTL users can upgrade.

Mentor Graphics Corp.
(800) 632-3742

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