Essential Electronic Design Automation (EDA)

Prentice Hall
Mark D. Birnbaum  
Prentice Hall
Total pages
October 2003
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Today, we take for granted many electronic products such as cellular phones, digital cameras, personal stereos, and printers. But none of these microchip-based electronic products would be possible without the essential (but mostly unknown) Electronic Design Automation (EDA) software tools engineers use to create them. Introduction to Electronic Design Automation gives an overview of the EDA business in the context of the electronic product and semiconductor industries it supports. It covers both the business aspects and the engineering issues addressed by EDA tools, described in layperson's terms.While addressing non-technical readers, the book can also help many technical employees needing the "big picture".

Table of Contents


Purpose of This Book.

Intended Audience.



1. Introduction to EDA.

Introduction. Electronic Products. Printed Circuit (PC) Boards. Integrated Circuits. CAD, CAM, CAE, and EDA. Data, Signals, and Input/Output. Electronic Product Development. EDA Party-Users and Tools. System Design. Logic Design. ASIC Design. Physical Layout Design. EDA Benefits. Summary.

2. The Business of EDA.

Introduction. EDA User Return on Investment. EDA Vendor Return On Investment. EDA Tool Development Sources. In-house/Out-source EDA Tool Development. The Time-to-Market Competition. EDA Business Models. New EDA Tools. Licensing Models. Mergers and Acquisitions. Application Service Provider Model. Design Services Business. EDA Industry Growth. Relative Industry Sizes: EDA, IC, Electronics. Relative Risk Factor. EDA People and Conferences. People Opportunities. Key Conferences. Summary. Quick Quiz.

3. The User Perspective.

Introduction. Four Key EDA User Decisions. Organization. Computer Network. Security Requirements. Computer Systems. Engineering / Non-engineering Goals. How to Buy EDA Tools-Five Key Issues. Cost/Performance. Training and Support. Make or Buy. Compatibility. Transition. Standards Efforts-Who, What, and Why. Design Flow Integration. EDA Tool Interface Standards. Frameworks. Design Database Standards. Standards Groups. Personnel-The Key to EDA Support. University Connections. Summary. Quick Quiz.

4. Overview of EDA Tools and Design Concepts.

Introduction. Tool Improvements. Major Classes of EDA Tools. Electronic System-Level Design Tools. Front-end Design Tools. Back-end Design Tools. Essential EDA Concepts. Design Views. Design Data. Design Hierarchy. Design-The Art of Trial and Error. Design Styles. Design Partitioning. Architecture, Methodology, and Design Flow. IC Architectures. Design Methodology and Design Flow. Tool Suites. Summary. Quick Quiz.

5. Electronic System-Level Design Tools.

Introduction. Specification Guidelines. System-Level Design Tools. High-Level Modeling. System-Level Design Languages. Design Space Exploration and Trade-offs. Test Bench Creation. Other System-Level Tools. Hardware/Software Integration. Approaches to Co-Design. Hardware and Software Co-Design. Embedded Systems. Real Time. Reliability. Summary. Quick Quiz.

6. Front-end Design Tools.

Introduction. Design Capture Tools. Hardware Description Languages. Specialized Design Tools. Netlist Output. Design Capture Checking Tools. Verification Tools. Design Verification. Simulation. Simulation Speed. Formal Verification Tools. Device and Circuit Simulators. Timing Analysis Tools. Dynamic Timing Analysis. Static Timing Analysis. Clocks. Signal Timing. Design for Test Tools. Design for Test. Boundary Scan. Built-in Self Test. Power-Related Tools. Power Estimation Tools. Low-Power Design Tools. Synthesis Tools. Summary. Quick Quiz.

7. Back-end Design Tools (Physical Design).

Introduction. Physical Layout Tools. Floorplanning Tools. Placement and Routing Tools. Layout Styles. Power Routing Tools. Design Rule Check Tools. Extraction and Timing Analysis Tools. Signal Integrity Issues. Signal Integrity. Voltage Sensitivity. Noise Margin. Buffers. Switching Noise. Electromagnetic Interference. Metal Migration. Thermal Design Tools. Manufacturing Preparation Steps. Merging Operations. Electrostatic Discharge Protection. Mask-Making Preparations. Diagnostic and Manufacturing Tests. Automatic Test Pattern Generation. Product Engineering Tools. Porting Designs to New Processes. Summary. Quick Quiz.

8. Trends.

EDA Design Environment Trends. Integrated Design Suites. Run-Time Control Tools. Distributed Design. System Design Links to Chip Design. EDA Tool Trends. Design Closure. Formal Verification. Design Repair. Design for Test. Design for Manufacture (DFM) Trends. Design Redundancy. Chip-to-Chip Differences. Mask Enhancements. System-on-chip and IP Trends. Semiconductor Trends. Performance Design Issues. Power and Thermal Design Issues. Physical Design Issues. New Materials and Lithography150 Summary.

Appendix A: Elementary Electricity.

Introduction. Atoms and Electrons. Conductors, Insulators, and Semiconductors. Electrical Attributes. Electrical Current. Electrical Voltage. Resistance. Capacitance. Inductance. Direct and Alternating Current. Other Electrical Effects. Static Electricity. Coupling. Waves. Electrical Components. Semiconductor Devices.

Appendix B: Semiconductor Manufacturing.

Introduction. Manufacturing Process. Masks and Feature Size. Manufacturing Test. Packaging. IC Testing. Process Improvements.

Appendix C: Signals to Software.

Introduction. Transistor Circuits. Analog and Digital. Analog. Digital. Analog and Digital. Memory. Logic. Signal Delay. Computers. Software.

Appendix D: Metrics.

Introduction. Small Numbers. Large Numbers.

Appendix E: References.

Conferences. Organizations. Standards Groups. Publications. EDA Internet Sites. Universities.

Appendix F: ICs, IP, and SoC.

The IC Industry. Product Design. Integrated Circuit Design. Design Handoff. Design Re-use and Intellectual Property. Design Re-use. Intellectual Property. Types of IP Blocks. IP Vendor Business Models. IP Re-use Issues. System-on-Chip. SoC Issues. Platforms. Summary.

Appendix G: Glossary-Terms and Acronyms.


About the Author.

Back Cover

Essential Electronic Design Automation (EDA)

  • A unique, easy-to-understand introduction to the EDA software tools used to design IC microchips
  • Includes all aspects of EDA: business, technical, tool vendor and end user views, IC and EDA industry trends
  • Explains (in simple English) the concepts and terminology of IC design issues and the EDA tools that deal with them
  • Covers the complete range of EDA tools from electronic system-level through front-end functional design, synthesis, and backend physical design
  • Ideal for non-technical readers in sales, marketing, public relations, legal, finance, students, and new entrants to the EDA, semiconductor or related industries

Essential Electronic Design Automation (EDA) demystifies this highly technical industry for anyone with a "need-to-know" about EDA. A friendly, informal introduction to EDA business and technology, clear enough for laypeople yet detailed enough for technical readers. The book also makes an excellent complementary text for cross-disciplinary engineering, business and marketing courses on VLSI Design.

Simply and clearly, veteran industry leader Mark Birnbaum introduces the design problems EDA is intended to solve, the tools that exist to solve them, the designers who use them, and what makes EDA crucial to electronic product and chip design.

  • Explains how EDA fits into the electronic product and semiconductor industries
  • Examines the EDA industry from both the tool user and EDA software vendor perspectives, including business models, return on investment, and tool evaluation
  • Includes electronic system-level tools for defining what ICs will do, front-end functional chip-level tools for design how the IC will behave, and back-end design tools for implementing the IC physical layout
  • Discusses EDA industry trends and IC design issues, including deep submicron challenges, intellectual property (IP), and system-on-chip (SoC)
  • Includes EDA standards organizations and publications

Industry newcomers will appreciate the book's extensive set of appendices, including primers on electricity, semiconductor manufacturing, computing, and common dimensions, reference sources and a complete glossary with acronym pronunciation.


MARK D. BIRNBAUM brings unique qualifications to this subject, having worked as an EDA user, manager, developer and tool vendor. Mr. Birnbaum's experience at nine major computer, semiconductor, EDA and research organizations spans the electronics design world from system products to IC chips. He has held senior positions in engineering management, consulting, R&D, product development, test, and marketing, led two standards groups, and taught microelectronics and EDA classes.