Dynamically De-Skewable Clock Distribution Methodology Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • In a typical clock distribution scheme, a central clock signal is distributed to several sites on the integrated circuit (IC). Local regenerators at these sites buffer the clock signal for the logic in regions close to the regenerator. Minimizing the skew between the clocks at these regeneration sites is critical. In recent times, this is becoming harder due to increasing intra-die processing variations. In this paper, we describe a novel technique to distribute a clock signal from a central location to several sites on a VLSI IC. Our technique uses a buffered H-tree and includes circuitry to dynamically remove any skew that may result due to intra-die processing variations. While existing approaches to deskewing a clock tree have utilized several phase detection circuits (number of phase detectors dependent on the number of clock regenerators), our method requires only one phase detector. Also, in our approach, the resolution of the phase detector is inconsequential unlike existing techniques. Our deskewing technique can be applied dynamically, either at boot time or periodically during the operation of the IC. Using a six-level H-tree clock distribution network with process variations deliberately included, we demonstrate that our technique can reduce skews as high as 300 ps down to just 3 ps. We compare our clock tree with traditional buffered and unbuffered H-tree networks. © 2008 IEEE.

altmetric score

  • 3

author list (cited authors)

  • Kapoor, A., Jayakumar, N., & Khatri, S. P.

citation count

  • 2

publication date

  • September 2008