HRC: A 3d NoC architecture with genuine support for runtime thermal-aware task management

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IEEE Transactions on Computers





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In spite of escalating thermal challenges imposed by high power consumption, most reported 3D Network-on-chip (NoC) systems that adopt classic 3D cube (mesh) topology are unable to tackle the thermal management issues directly at the architectural level. Rather, to avoid chip being overheated, tasks running in a 'hot' node have to be migrated to a 'cooler' one, resulting in increased distance between communicating nodes and ultimately poor performance. In this paper, we propose a new 3D NoC architecture that genuinely supports runtime thermal-aware task management. Dubbed Hierarchical Ring Cluster (HRC), this new hierarchical 3D NoC architecture has three levels across its entire network hierarchy: 1) nodes are grouped as rings, 2) rings are then grouped into cubes, and 3) multiple cubes are connected to form the whole network. Routing in a HRC system is also performed in a hierarchical manner: Paths are set up within rings using low latency circuit switching, and data that need to cross the rings or cubes are routed following dimension-order routing supported by wormhole switching. In this organization, 'hot' tasks that need to migrate can move along the rings without incurring increased communication distances. Our experimental results have confirmed that the proposed HRC architecture has a much lower network latency than other known 3D NoC architectures. When working with runtime thermal-aware task migration approaches, HRC can help reduce latency by as much as 80 percent compared to thermal-aware task migration approaches applied to 3D mesh NoC topologies. © 1968-2012 IEEE.



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