Novel Approach to Early detection of Metastability related issues
TimeMonday, July 11th10:30am - 10:45am PDT
Location2010, Level 2
Event Type
Engineering Tracks
Front-End Design
Front-End Design
DescriptionMetastability is unavoidable in digital designs with asynchronous clock or reset crossings that can cause timing violations leading to unpredictable delay through synchronized paths resulting is loss of coherency. Clock Domain Crossing (CDC) and Reset Domain Crossing (RDC) analysis identify scenarios where the design could be vulnerable to metastability effects leading to functional failures. Traditional CDC/RDC methodologies are typically confined to structural analysis followed by limited functional checks and metastability aware verification is rarely part of the CDC signoff process.

In this paper, we share our experiences about how we comprehensively modeled the metastability effect in both formal and simulation based functional verification flows. We present how these novel techniques helped us to run metastability aware functional verification at the RTL stage, thereby doing a shift-left to significantly reduce the time to CDC signoff. We share the results of our analysis that showcases corner case bugs found using this methodology. If a bug is found that necessitates RTL modification, it is possible to check it instantly, without performing synthesis and place and route. We shall show how you can effectively and efficiently adopt this flow to make your CDC signoff comprehensive.