Synopsys Professional Services Helps Accelerate Implementation of ARCtangent-Based Systems-On-Chips

9/19/2002 - Synopsys, the technology leader for complex integrated circuit (IC) design, announced that Synopsys Professional Services has assisted ARC International, a world leader in configurable SoC platform technologies, with two strategic projects that enable ARC and its customers to integrate ARCtangentTM microprocessor cores more quickly and reliably into SoCs at 0.13 micron and below geometries. In addition, ARC has now joined other premier intellectual property (IP) providers as a member of the Synopsys Professional Services Alliance Program. The Alliance Program offers developers of complex ICs a comprehensive set of design services leveraging design solutions from best-in-class technology vendors, enabling customers to gain access to complete product development solutions that shorten product development time.

In the first project with ARC, an integration flow from RTL to Placed Gates was established, providing a faster and more predictable route for implementing designs utilizing ARCís configurable processor cores on various silicon technologies. In the second project, Synopsys design consultants helped develop a VERA® and C-based verification environment for ARCís configurable processors and its peripherals. This environment is used by ARC for internal validation of their cores, as well as by the companyís customers to ensure correct integration of ARC IP into their SoC designs.

"Enabling quick SoC integration and addressing the challenges of deep sub-micron technologies is becoming mandatory with soft IP deployment, and with the new flow developed in cooperation with Synopsys we were able to meet aggressive integration goals," said Mike Gulett, President and CEO of ARC International. "Synopsys Professional Services has great breadth and depth of understanding of how SoCs are designed and verified today, including considerable experience with the smallest process geometries and complex verification environments. We selected a partner that would not only fulfil our requirements, but who could also provide high-end SoC design services to our customers. Synopsys Professional Services fits the bill perfectly."

The integration flow, which includes synthesis, design-for-test, static-timing analysis, formal verification, power optimization and core floorplanning, provides ARCís OEM customers with a predictable route to silicon, while allowing them to effectively use the configurability and extensibility of the ARCtangent core. Synopsys helped create and validate the design flow with multiple ARCtangent core configurations and alternative integration approaches, including logical synthesis and physical synthesis utilizing the DesignWare® IP Library. The physical synthesis approach allows SoC designers to use either a default core floorplan created by Synopsys, or to use Physical Compiler'sTM RTL-performance prototyping to enable designs to be implemented without a pre-existing floorplan of the core.

The VERA-based verification environment integrates with ARCís Instruction Set Simulator and includes a generator of random, legal instruction streams to verify the multi-directional flow of data through the ARCtangent microprocessor core and peripherals. The environment uses advanced verification techniques and includes a self-checking mechanism to automatically ensure correct functional operation of the ARC sub-system, both stand-alone and when integrated into an SoC. Execution efficiency was maximized during the verification project through close collaboration between the two teams — Synopsysí staff worked alongside ARCís engineers at multiple international sites.

The collaboration leveraged the complementary strengths of the two companies — Synopsysí experience in implementing advanced SoC designs using the latest methodologies, and ARCís processor design expertise and understanding of end-user requirements. The agreement between ARC and Synopsys Professional Services is based on enabling the integration flow and verification flow for mutual customers.

"Proven design flows that have been optimized to implement and verify 0.13 micron designs are not off-the-shelf commodities," said Roderick Urquhart, European Director of Consulting Design Services at Synopsys Professional Services. "The collaboration with ARC was successful not only in satisfying ARC as our customer, but in recognizing the additional value these projects bring to our mutual customers. With ARC as the newest member of our Alliance Program, the new integration flow and verification environment we established together can be leveraged by ARC licensees for a faster and more predictable SoC design process."

About Synopsys Professional Services
Synopsys Professional Services directly contributes to the success of leading electronics firms worldwide by delivering the technology, methodology and design expertise to solve their most demanding SoC development challenges. A global design services organization with proven flows and infrastructure, Synopsys Professional Services offers a comprehensive portfolio of services that cover all critical phases of IC design, implementation and verification, as well as systems -level design and standards conformance products for wireless and broadband applications. Synopsys Professional Services offers its customers flexible engagement models, from methodology-driven project assistance to full turnkey design projects, to best fit their business and project needs.

About Synopsys
Synopsys, Inc. (Nasdaq:SNPS), headquartered in Mountain View, California, creates leading electronic design automation (EDA) tools for the global electronics market. The company delivers advanced design technologies and solutions to developers of complex integrated circuits, electronic systems and systems on a chip. Synopsys also provides consulting and support services to simplify the overall IC design process and accelerate time to market for its customers.

Synopsys is a registered trademark of Synopsys, Inc.

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