Benefits of Asynchronous Control for Analog Electronics: Multiphase Buck Case Study

Danil Sokolov1, Vladimir Dubikhin1, Victor Khomenko1, David Lloyd2, Andrey Mokhov1 and Alex Yakovlev1
1Newcastle University, UK
2Dialog Semiconductor, UK


Analog and mixed signal (AMS) electronics becomes increasingly complex and needs to be digitally enhanced by its own control circuitry. The RTL synthesis flow routinely used for digital logic is however optimized for synchronous data processing and produces inefficient control for AMS. In this paper we demonstrate the evident benefits of asynchronous circuits in the context of AMS systems, and propose an asynchronous design for analog electronics (A4A) flow for their specification, synthesis, and formal verification. A library of specialized analogto-asynchronous (A2A) components is developed for interfacing analog signals to asynchronous control. A4A flow is automated in the WORKCRAFT framework and evaluated using a multiphase buck converter case study. The simulation results show improved response time, voltage ripple, and peak current of the buck when controlled asynchronously. These benefits lead to the higher efficiency of power conversion, and can be traded off for the cost of analog components. A4A flow, A2A interfaces, and WORKCRAFT tools are used for development of power converters at Dialog Semiconductor.

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