Time-division-multiplexed arbitration in silicon nanophotonic networks-on-chip for high-performance chip multiprocessors

Gilbert Hendry, Eric Robinson, Vitaliy Gleyzer, Johnnie Chan, Luca P. Carloni, Nadya Bliss, Keren Bergman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


As the computational performance of microprocessors continues to grow through the integration of an increasing number of processing cores on a single die, the interconnection network has become the central subsystem for providing the communications infrastructure among the on-chip cores as well as to off-chip memory. Silicon nanophotonics as an interconnect technology offers several promising benefits for future networks-on-chip, including low end-to-end transmission energy and high bandwidth density of waveguides using wavelength division multiplexing. In this work, we propose the use of time-division- multiplexed distributed arbitration in a photonic mesh network composed of silicon micro-ring resonator based photonic switches, which provides round-robin fairness to setting up photonic circuit paths. Our design sustains over 10× more bandwidth and uses less power than the compared network designs. We also observe a 2× improvement in performance for memory-centric application traces using the MORE modeling system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)641-650
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Parallel and Distributed Computing
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Memory systems
  • Networks-on-chip
  • Photonic interconnection networks
  • Silicon photonics
  • Time division multiplexing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Artificial Intelligence


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