Computer chips are constantly decreasing, making the industry moves forward, increasing performance and energy efficiency while keeping costs at an acceptable level. The development of portable electronics imposes particularly stringent requirements for the chips. The problem is that the smaller chips and transistors are made, the more vulnerable, and they become brittle.
In anticipation of a situation where the chips will become too complicated to maintain the current level of resilience, a team of four companies and two universities in the Netherlands, Germany and Finland have developed a relatively simple solution to the problem: a chip that monitors its own performance characteristics, and redirects If necessary tasks.
Crystal resettable chip CRISP
Kerhoff Hans (Hans Kerkhoff) from the Dutch University of Twente and member of the consortium CRISP (Cutting-edge Reconfigurable ICs for Stream Processing) reports that due to the increase in density of chips on the transistor becomes more difficult to maintain the high reliability of the system. The solution, according to scientists, is not to create a chip that would not be degraded over time, and in the creation of chips, the ability to remain functional in the event of failure of individual blocks. He calls it "elegant degradation."
In order to enable such "elegant degradation", the chip CRISP relies on multiple computing cores. Different tasks are allocated to the kernel built-in hardware resource manager. The connections between the nuclei are constantly checked and when errors are detected, the task of the failed kernel simply reallocated to other work units.
As a result of this approach, although the chip itself does not become more reliable, he is able to continue to operate for a longer time. Self-healing, or rather, self-testing chip was recently demonstrated at the conference DATE2011 in the French city of Grenoble.
The block diagram of the self-repairing chip CRISP