Digital Systems Design using E-CAD tools/Computer-Aided Design

Course Code: 
Spring Semester
Credit Points: 


Course outline

Part A. Lectures

 Basic Knowledge

 Elements of digital circuits – Setup and hold time in sequential elements

 TTL and CMOS families and their characteristics

 Timing info required for a correct design

 Design methodologies

  • Full-custom design
  • Semi-custom design
  • Standard-cell design

       Design implementation methodologies

  • Standard-cell implementation
  • Gate – Array, Sea-of-gates, LPGA and FPGA implementation

 PCBs and PLDs

 PCB manufacturing process

 Available chip packages and their relation to available pin count

 Packages footprints

 Routing layers, line widths, hole diameters and their impact on the PCB cost

 Supply and ground layers

 What a designer needs to deliver for PCB implementation

 PLDs :

  • ROMs, FPROMs, EPROMs, EEPROMs and Flash memories
  • PALs, PLAs, GALs and FPLSs
  • The interconnection problem within a PLD and the solutions provided by CPLDs and FPGAs.


 Basic subdesigns : CLBs, IO blocks and programmable interconnect

 A close look on the Xilinx  4000 E/EX series FPGAs

 The programming of an FPGA or a chain of FPGAs

 FPGA size and pin count evolution

 Embedded processors, embedded memories and optical transceivers in modern FPGAs. What else should be embedded to achieve System-On-Chip (SoC).

 Design flowchart

 The need for a flowchart

 Front-end and back-end

 Front-end design processes: Design entry, logic simulation. Different design entry methods available: graphical, HDL description, macro-block instantiation, FSM based, truth table based, etc.

 The back-end design processes depending on the implementation: synthesis and mapping, macro-block generation, flattening, packaging, placement, routing, extraction, back-annotation and timing verification.

 The relationship between e-cad tools organization and design flowchart


 HDL design entry

  • The need for specialized languages
  • The difference between an HDL and a programming language
  • A short introduction of VHDL
  • A thorough presentation of the Verilog HDL

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