iRazor: 3-transistor current-based error detection and correction in an ARM Cortex-R4 processor


It is well known that technology scaling has led to increasing process/voltage/temperature/aging margins that substantially degrade performance and power in modern processors and SoCs. One approach to address these large timing margins is the use of specialized registers on critical paths that perform error detection and correction (EDAC). While promising, the previously proposed implementations have been limited in several ways. Most notably, they often incur large overheads beyond conventional register designs (e.g., 8-to-44 additional transistors per register). This becomes an obstacle for commercial designs and, hence, there have been no reported implementations of EDAC approaches within substantial commercial processors. Finally, the performance gain from EDAC approaches has not been thoroughly quantified in relation to competing, lower overhead approaches such as frequency binning and canary circuits/critical path monitors.

2016 IEEE International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC)