RRAM-Based Analog Approximate Computing

TitleRRAM-Based Analog Approximate Computing
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsB Li, P Gu, Y Shan, Y Wang, Y Chen, and H Yang
JournalIeee Transactions on Computer Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems
Start Page1905
Pagination1905 - 1917
Date Published12/2015

Approximate computing is a promising design paradigm for better performance and power efficiency. In this paper, we propose a power efficient framework for analog approximate computing with the emerging metal-oxide resistive switching random-Access memory (RRAM) devices. A programmable RRAM-based approximate computing unit (RRAM-ACU ) is introduced first to accelerate approximated computation, and an approximate computing framework with scalability is then proposed on top of the RRAM-ACU. In order to program the RRAM-ACU efficiently, we also present a detailed configuration flow, which includes a customized approximator training scheme, an approximator-parameter-To-RRAM-state mapping algorithm, and an RRAM state tuning scheme. Finally, the proposed RRAM-based computing framework is modeled at system level. A predictive compact model is developed to estimate the configuration overhead of RRAM-ACU and help explore the application scenarios of RRAM-based analog approximate computing. The simulation results on a set of diverse benchmarks demonstrate that, compared with a x86-64 CPU at 2 GHz, the RRAM-ACU is able to achieve 4.06-196.41 {\times } speedup and power efficiency of 24.59-567.98 GFLOPS/W with quality loss of 8.72% on average. And the implementation of hierarchical model and X application demonstrates that the proposed RRAM-based approximate computing framework can achieve >12.8 \times power efficiency than its pure digital implementation counterparts (CPU, graphics processing unit, and field-programmable gate arrays).

Short TitleIeee Transactions on Computer Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems