Universal switch modules for fpga design

Yao-Wen Chang, D. F. Wong, C. K. Wong

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

105 Citations (Scopus)


A switch module M with W terminals on each side is said to be universal if every set of nets satisfying the dimensional constraint (i.e., the number of nets on each side of M is at most W) is simultaneously routable through M. In this article, we present a class of universal switch modules. Each of our switch modules has 6W switches and switch-module flexibility three (i.e., FS = 3). We prove that no switch module with less than 6W switches can be universal. We also compare our switch modules with those used in the Xilinx XC4000 family FPGAs and the antisymmetric switch modules (with Fs = 3)1 suggested by Rose and Brown [1991]. Although these two kinds of switch modules also have Fs = 3 and 6W switches, we show that they are not universal. Based on combinatorial counting techniques, we show that each of our universal switch modules can accommodate up to 25% more routing instances, compared with the XC4000-type switch module of the same size. Experimental results demonstrate that our universal switch modules improve routability at the chip level. Finally, our work also provides a theoretical insight into the important observation by Rose and Brown [1991] (based on extensive experiments) that Fs -3 is often sufficient to provide high routability.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)80-101
Number of pages22
JournalACM Transactions on Design Automation of Electronic Systems
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1996

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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