Now, ultra small, energy efficient computer chip

April 23rd, 2009 - 4:46 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, Apr 23 (ANI): Scientists from University of California, Davis have developed an ultra small chip that provides breakthrough speeds for a variety of computing tasks.

The 167-processor chip, known as AsAP, is fully reprogrammable, extremely energy-efficient, highly configurable. It can be widely adapted to a number of applications.

The maximum clock speed for the 167-processor AsAP is 1.2 gigahertz (GHz), but at slower speeds its energy efficiency soars.

Moreover, twelve chips working together could perform more than half-a-trillion operations per second (.52 Tera-ops/sec) while using less power than a 7-watt light bulb.

“A battery powering this chip will typically last from several times to 75 times longer than it would under the same workload when powering some of the common commercially available digital signal processing chips,” said Bevan Baas, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and leader of the design team.

“At the same time, with our targeted applications, we’re getting several times to 10 times better speed than what is currently available - all with a much smaller chip.

“To the best of our knowledge, this is the highest clock-rate processor chip designed at any university,” Baas added.

The chip, built with industry-standard fabrication technology and design tools, embodies a number of novel architectural and circuit features, Baas explained.

The scientists have written a number of software applications for the chip, which has been fabricated by the international electronics company STMicrotronics. Some of them are Wi-Fi receiver and several complex components of an H.264 video encoder.

The details of the design have been published in IEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits. (ANI)

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