Issue No. 10 - October (1987 vol. 36)
D.M. Chapiro , Systems Science, Inc.
Numerous papers have discussed the behavior of flip-flops in synchrronization and arbitration circuits. Here, a nonconventional machine, which avoids completely synchronization failures by using metastability detectors in conjunction with a stretchable clock, is evaluated. The core of the paper focuses on the quantitative evaluation of the performance and reliability of this unconventional kind of machine. Only synchronization and arbitration failures are considered here, so when these machines are compared to conventional ones, all other factors affecting reliability and performance (e.g., technology, fabrication, etc.) are kept invariant. The MTBF's and a new normalized throughput measure show they can run substantially faster and more reliably than functionally equivalent, conventional machines with fixed clocks. Integrrated circuit implementations have been built and successfully tested.
VLSI, Arbitration, asynchronous communication, continu- ously stretchable clocks, digital systems, high performance, metastability detection, reliability, synchronization
D. Chapiro, "Reliable High-Speed Arbitration and Synchronization," in IEEE Transactions on Computers, vol. 36, no. , pp. 1251-1255, 1987.