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Quantitative comparison of performance analysis techniques for modular and generic network-on-chip

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NoC-specific parameters feature a huge impact on performance and implementation costs of NoC. Hence, performance and cost evaluation of these parameter-dependent NoC is crucial in different design-stages but the requirements on performance analysis differ from stage to stage. In an early design-stage an analysis technique featuring reduced complexity and limited accuracy can be applied, whereas in subsequent design-stages more accurate techniques are required. In this work several performance analysis techniques at different levels of abstraction are presented and quantitatively compared. These techniques include a static performance analysis using timing-models, a Colored Petri Net-based approach, VHDL- and SystemC-based simulators and an FPGA-based emulator. Conducting NoC-experiments with NoC-sizes from 9 to 36 functional units and various traffic patterns, characteristics of these experiments concerning accuracy, complexity and effort are derived. The performance analysis techniques discussed here are quantitatively evaluated and finally assigned to the appropriate design-stages in an automated NoC-design-flow.


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