A Reconfigurable Data-Path Accelerator Based on Single Flux Quantum Circuits

Hiroshi KATAOKA  Hiroaki HONDA  Farhad MEHDIPOUR  Nobuyuki YOSHIKAWA  Akira FUJIMAKI  Hiroyuki AKAIKE  Naofumi TAKAGI  Kazuaki MURAKAMI  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Electronics   Vol.E97-C   No.3   pp.141-148
Publication Date: 2014/03/01
Online ISSN: 1745-1353
DOI: 10.1587/transele.E97.C.141
Print ISSN: 0916-8516
Type of Manuscript: INVITED PAPER (Special Section on Leading-Edge Technology of Superconductor Large-Scale Integrated Circuits)
single flux quantum,  reconfigurable data-path,  accelerator,  

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The single flux quantum (SFQ) is expected to be a next-generation high-speed and low-power technology in the field of logic circuits. CMOS as the dominant technology for conventional processors cannot be replaced with SFQ technology due to the difficulty of implementing feedback loops and conditional branches using SFQ circuits. This paper investigates the applicability of a reconfigurable data-path (RDP) accelerator based on SFQ circuits. The authors introduce detailed specifications of the SFQ-RDP architecture and compare its performance and power/performance ratio with those of a graphics-processing unit (GPU). The results show at most 1600 times higher efficiency in terms of Flops/W (floating-point operations per second/Watt) for some high-performance computing application programs.