Compiler-Assisted Refresh Minimization for Volatile STT-RAM Cache

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

15 Scopus Citations
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Author(s)

  • Qingan Li
  • Yanxiang He
  • Jianhua Li
  • Liang Shi
  • Yiran Chen

Related Research Unit(s)

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Article number6911976
Pages (from-to)2169-2181
Journal / PublicationIEEE Transactions on Computers
Volume64
Issue number8
Online published25 Sep 2014
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015

Abstract

Spin-transfer torque RAM (STT-RAM) has been proposed to build on-chip caches because of its attractive features such as high storage density and ultra low leakage power. However, long write latency and high write energy are the two challenges for STT-RAM. Recently, researchers propose to improve the write performance of STT-RAM by relaxing its non-volatility property. To avoid data losses resulting from volatility, refresh schemes have been proposed. However, refresh operations consume additional overhead. In this paper, we propose to significantly reduce the number of refresh operations through re-arranging program data layout at compilation time. An N-refresh scheme is also proposed to further reduce the number of refreshes. Experimental results show that, on average, the proposed methods can reduce the number of refresh operations by 84.2 percent, and reduce the dynamic energy consumption by 38.0 percent for volatile STT-RAM caches while incurring only 4.1 percent performance degradation.

Research Area(s)

  • Compilation, Refresh, Volatile STT-RAM

Citation Format(s)

Compiler-Assisted Refresh Minimization for Volatile STT-RAM Cache. / Li, Qingan; He, Yanxiang; Li, Jianhua; Shi, Liang; Chen, Yiran; Xue, Chun Jason.

In: IEEE Transactions on Computers, Vol. 64, No. 8, 6911976, 08.2015, p. 2169-2181.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review