Power management—and power-based differentiation—is fast becoming one of the most critical design constraints in the world of IC designers. The challenge of designing chips with optimum energy density and power consumption threatens to increase design time and, therefore, time-to-market. Engineers need to routinely apply sophisticated low-power design methods that can address the rising impact of power problems occurring in nanometer designs at 130nm and below, as well as in portable electronic devices and large complex digital ICs.
Power consequences occur at every stage of the design process, but addressing them early on will result in greater impact. Since attempts to reduce power can affect performance attributes such as timing, area, testability and signal integrity, understanding requirements for example of a multimode system that warrants a multi-core processor will drive technique.
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