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Tenstorrent teams with Imperas


While virtual platforms have become the standard approach for processor-based SoC developments, the requirements for quality processor models have never been more critical.

Imperas Software Ltd., a leader in RISC-V simulation solutions, says that Tenstorrent, a next-generation computing company that builds computers for AI, has collaborated with Imperas to make available a model of the Tenstorrent Ascalon processor core as part of the Imperas RISC-V model library. As with other areas of abstraction during the complex SoC design process, software simulation provides a functional representation as a programmer's view of the hardware - this allows an early-stage evaluation of some design options, firmware, and driver development and offers unique access for debugging and analysis. The models of Tenstorrent IP, available as part of Imperas simulation solutions, supports many time-critical aspects of SoC development and helps address the time-to-market and time-to-volume factors for SoC developers adopting Tenstorrent IP.

Ascalon is a high-performance, scalable RISC-V processor with industry-leading performance efficiency and a highly configurable core that allows it to scale from the Edge to HPC data center/cloud applications. The Imperas model matches Ascalon's configuration space, including multi and many core options, while offering fast simulation performance for software development of highly complex systems and exploration of different system architectures.

As virtual platforms are now the most common approach to SoC projects with integrated processors, the critical requirement is for quality reference models that accurately represent the configurability of the processor IP core. In addition, for software developers and the wider user community adoption, the models must be compatible with various industry-standard tools and design flows. Many SoC projects are undertaken with teams from multiple locations and often across different corporate departments or even separate firms. Virtual platforms allow for frictionless collaboration across remote teams.

The Imperas model for Ascalon can also integrate within other standard EDA environments, such as SystemC, SystemVerilog, and well-known simulation and emulation tools from Cadence, Siemens EDA, and Synopsys. A hybrid approach is often utilized to combine the Imperas simulation technology with emulation environments to address interim analysis requirements while parts of the RTL of the SoC are still in development.

"The Tenstorrent Ascalon processor is focused on serving the compute requirements of next-generation workloads emerging at the Edge and data center/cloud with the rapid proliferation of AI high-performance applications, including Edge AI and HPC," said Aniket Saha, VP of Product Strategy at Tenstorrent. "The Imperas model for Ascalon provides a quality model for software development and integration with many popular industry standard flows and EDA tools."

"Any SoC developer that implements an IP processor core quickly discovers the fundamental interactions between the hardware and software design phases," said Simon Davidmann, CEO at Imperas Software Ltd. "Now developers using the Tenstorrent Ascalon IP can use the Imperas models as a reference for software development to support the shift-left of project schedules."

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