Hybrid Electric/Photonic Networks for Scientific Applications on Tiled CMPs

TitleHybrid Electric/Photonic Networks for Scientific Applications on Tiled CMPs
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsJain, A., Kamil S., Mohiyuddin M., Shalf J., & Kubiatowicz J. D.
Conference NameWorkshop on High Performance Embedded Computing
Date Published08/2008
Abstract

As multiprocessors scale to unprecedented numbers of cores in order to sustain performance growth, it is vital that the gains in speed not come with increasingly high energy consumption. Recent advances in 3D Integration (3DI) CMOS technology have made possible hybrid photonic networks-on-chip (NoC), which have the potential to result in high performance while consuming much less power than an equivalent electrical network. However, it remains to be seen whether the benefits of hybrid NoCs will carry over for real applications. Our work is the first attempt at a comparison of hybrid NoCs with electrical networks using both synthetic benchmarks as well as real scientific applications. We describe analytical models for the two networks as well as insights from simulation studies. Results show that the hybrid NoCs outperform electrical NoCs both in terms of performance and energy consumption, as long as the communications are sufficiently large to amortize the increased latency costs. Lastly, this work demonstrates the importance of finding good process-to-processor mappings in order to obtain high performance while reducing energy consumption. Overall, results illustrate the potential benefits of hybrid photonic networks for future manycore chips.

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