Foundries, both pure-play and independent device manufacturers (IDM), rigorously compete for market share. One factor that helps them get and keep business is turnaround time (TAT). Until recently, companies could reduce TAT by adding computer hardware, fine-tuning OPC recipes, improving input hierarchical handling of designs, and upgrading to new software versions with new functionality and performance benefits. However, the margin of improvement available from those options is shrinking along with the technology nodes. Something new is needed, and that something new is cluster resource management. With cluster management, resources are no longer allocated in full to a job for the duration of that job’s run. Cluster manager software governs hardware and software resources for all jobs running on a compute cluster. It finds and allocates any idle resources to jobs that can use them, optimizing the distribution of resources to all jobs running simultaneously on that cluster. One experiment demonstrated just over a 30% aggregate TAT improvement for a large set of jobs in conjunction with a greater than 90% average utilization across all hardware resources.
Want to learn more? Get all the details in the SPIE paper An Automated Resource Management System to Improve Production Tapeout Turn-Around Time.