VLSI Security and Performance Enghancement




Wang, Qian

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Hardware is the foundation of any security system. A growing number of security enhancement solutions are implemented in hardware due to the limitation of software implementation. However, hardware also faces a number of security threats. In today's global IC industry, a design house, an IP vendor, a CAD company, or a foundry could embed malicious Trojan components in an IC design, which (1) alters the computation, or (2) provides a back door for information leak. In the first half of this work, we achieve a Trojan component, which compromises the computation integrity of the OpenSPARC T2 processor with negligible area and power consumption overhead.

In the second half of this work, we achieve a performance improvement technique for VLSI in the presence of performance variations. VLSI technology scaling has led to increasingly significant parametric variations from the manufacturing process and the runtime environment. Traditional worst case performance analysis and optimization techniques are overpessimistic and prevent VLSI from achieving further performance scaling. We apply a statistical performance analysis method Signal Probability Based Statistical Timing Analysis (SPSTA), and performance improvement for identified critical paths by Generalized Bypass Transform (GBT). Our experimental results based on ISCAS benchmark circuits show a 1.09X performance increasing while the tradeoff is an average of 1.35X area penalty.


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Electrical and Computer Engineering