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Mediatek/ADiT

MediaTek Achieves Faster Transistor and Behavioral Simulation with ADiT Fast-SPICE.

Founded in 1997, MediaTek Inc. is a leading fabless semiconductor company with headquarters in Hsinchu, Taiwan. It is a market leader and pioneer in cutting-edge SoC system solutions for wireless communications, high-definition TV, optical storage, DVD, and Blu-ray products.

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Ultimately, they achieved a 95 percent reduction in simulation time—from more than 58 hours to just 3 hours—because they were able to run both the behavioral and transistor blocks using ADiT.”

MediaTek

Founded in 1997, MediaTek Inc. is a leading fabless semiconductor company with headquarters in Hsinchu, Taiwan. It is a market leader and pioneer in cutting-edge SoC system solutions for wireless communications, high-definition TV, optical storage, DVD, and Blu-ray products.

On this particular project, the team faced two major challenges: design flow and design complexity. They needed to consolidate tools from an acquired company’s tool flow as well as integrate its IP into their design.

Because ADiT supports all major digital simulators and universally accepts IP written in any standard design language, the designers successfully met both the design flow and complexity challenges. ADiT either outperformed or matched competitive tools in performance and accuracy during an evaluation that compared how various AMS simulators performed in the consolidated tool flow. The team also had confidence in ADiT because they had used the tool for more than a decade.

members

Block diagram before transformation of modules.

Other challenges had to do with the design itself. In this case, the team needed to verify an AMS design with 14,000 MOSFET transistors and 56,000 nodes. They had to reduce the turnaround time to meet their tape out schedule and integrate multiple language blocks.

To be able to speed up simulation, they had to raise the level of abstraction because of the large number of transistors by replacing some blocks originally at the transistor level with behavioral models. At the time, they began the project, ADiT could only simulate at the transistor level, so the team worked with Mentor Graphics engineers to incorporate behavioral modeling. The result was that they could easily switch transistor-level analog blocks and transistor-level digital blocks into Verilog-AMS and Verilog-D modules, respectively, within the ADiT Verilog-AMS flow.

First, they transferred some of the analog parts of the design from the transistor level to Verilog-AMS. This resulted in a 35 percent reduction in the number of MOSFETS and a 33 percent reduction in simulation time.

Next, they transferred some of the digital parts into Verilog-D. The two transformations combined resulted in an 85 percent reduction in the number of MOSFETS.

Ultimately, they achieved a 95 percent reduction in simulation time—from more than 58 hours to just 3 hours—because they were able to run both the behavioral and transistor blocks using ADiT.

members

Performance comparison before and after transformations.

Although ADiT delivers good results right out of the box, Mentor Graphics customer support was critical to this success because of the joint development of the behavioral modeling capability. The MediaTek team enjoyed the dedication of two full-time Mentor AMS experts onsite, who helped them develop their project and run test cases very quickly. There was no doubt that the ADiT simulation tool delivered improved productivity for their mixed-language, mixed-signal design.

Although ADiT delivers good results right out of the box, Mentor Graphics customer support was critical to this success because of the joint development of the behavioral modeling capability. The MediaTek team enjoyed the dedication of two full-time Mentor AMS experts onsite, who helped them develop their project and run test cases very quickly.”

MediaTek

Challenges

  • Reduce turnaround time to meet tape out schedule and integrate multiple language blocks
  • Consolidate tools from an acquired company’s tool flow and integrate its IP into their design
  • Verify an AMS design with 14,000 MOSFET transistors and 56,000 nodes

Results

  • Achieved a 95 percent reduction in simulation time because they were able to run both behavioral and transistor blocks
  • Improved productivity for mixed-language, mixed-signal design
  • ADiT support for all major digital simulators and IP written in any standard design language
  • Mentor Graphics customer support critical to successful behavioral modeling effort
 
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