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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Energy optimization for many-core platforms under process, voltage and temperature variations Majzoub, Sohaib


Many-core architectures are the most recent shift in multi-processor design. This processor design paradigm replaces large monolithic processing units by thousands of simple processing elements on a single chip. With such a large number of processing units, it promises significant throughput advantage over traditional multi-core platforms. Furthermore, it enables better localized control of power consumption and thermal gradients. This is achieved by selective reduction of the core’s supply voltage, or by switching some of the cores off to reduce power consumption and heat dissipation. This dissertation proposes an energy optimization flow to implement applications on many-core architectures taking into account the impact of Process Voltage and Temperature (PVT) variations. The flow utilizes multi-supply voltage techniques, namely voltage island design, to reduce power consumption in the implementation. We propose a novel approach to voltage island formation, called Voltage Island Clouds, that reduces the impact of on-chip or intra-die PVT variations. The islands are created by balancing their shape constraints imposed by intra- and inter-island communication with the desire to limit the spatial extent of each island to minimize PVT impact. We propose an algorithm to build islands for Static Voltage Scaling (SVS) and Multiple Voltage Scaling (MVS) design approaches. The optimization initially allows for a large number of islands, each with its unique voltage level. Next, the number of the islands is reduced to a small practical number, e.g., four voltages. We then propose an efficient voltage selection approach, called the Removal Cost Method (RCM), that provides near optimal results with more than a 10X speedup compared to the best-known previous methods. Finally, we present an evaluation platform considering pre- and post-fabrication PVT scenarios where multiple applications with hundreds to thousands of tasks are mapped onto many-core platforms with hundreds to thousands of cores to evaluate the proposed techniques. Results show that the geometric average energy savings for 33 test cases using the proposed methods is 25% better than previous methods.

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