IEEE Computer Architecture Letters

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From the July-December 2015 issue

Resistive Associative Processor

By Leonid Yavits, Shahar Kvatinsky, Amir Morad, and Ran Ginosar

Featured article thumbnail imageAssociative Processor (AP) combines data storage and data processing, and functions simultaneously as a massively parallel array SIMD processor and memory. Traditionally, AP is based on CMOS technology, similar to other classes of massively parallel SIMD processors. The main component of AP is a Content Addressable Memory (CAM) array. As CMOS feature scaling slows down, CAM experiences scalability problems. In this work, we propose and investigate an AP based on resistive CAM—the Resistive AP (ReAP). We show that resistive memory technology potentially allows scaling the AP from a few millions to a few hundred millions of processing units on a single silicon die. We compare the performance and power consumption of a ReAP to a CMOS AP and a conventional SIMD accelerator (GPU) and show that ReAP, although exhibiting higher power density, allows better scalability and higher performance.

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