Instruction-Level Abstraction (ILA): A Uniform Specification for System-on-Chip (SoC) Verification

In ACM Transactions on Design Automation of Electronic Systems

Modern Systems-on-Chip (SoC) designs are increasingly heterogeneous and contain specialized semi-programmable accelerators in addition to programmable processors. In contrast to the pre-accelerator era, when the ISA played an important role in verification by enabling a clean separation of concerns between software and hardware, verification of these “accelerator-rich” SoCs presents new challenges. This article addresses these challenges by providing a formal specification and high-level abstraction for accelerator functional behavior. It formalizes the concept of an Instruction Level Abstraction (ILA) and shows its application in modeling and verification of accelerators.

Hongce Zhang
Hongce Zhang
Assistant Professor in Microelectronics Thrust

My research interest is on hardware formal verification.