CSE Students Received 3 Awards in 2 Competitions at ICCAD

Congratulations to Shiju LIN, Jinwei LIU and Tianji LIU, supervised by Prof. Evangeline F.Y. YOUNG, won the first place in 2021 CAD Contest at International Conference on Computer-Aided Design (ICCAD) for topic “GPU-Accelerated Logic Rewriting”.  Xinshi ZANG, Fangzhou WANG and Jinwei LIU, supervised by Prof. Evangeline F.Y. YOUNG and Prof. Martin D.F. WONG, won the second place in another topic: “Routing with Cell Movement Advanced”.

The CAD Contest at ICCAD is a challenging, multi-month, research and development competition, focusing on advanced, real-world problems in the field of Electronic Design Automation (EDA). Three challenging topics were provided each year.  “GPU-Accelerated Logic Rewriting” is one of the three problems this year, and it was provided by NVIDIA. Logic rewriting is to find an equivalent representation of a logic circuit that minimizes the area (graph size). This problem asks contestants to utilize GPU and develop efficient and effective logic rewriting algorithms based on And-Inverter-Graph (AIG) representation.

“Routing with Cell Movement Advanced” is another problem provided by Synopsys. Splitting the physical implementation problem into two sub-problems (placement and routing) is a common approach to solve the modern complex physical implementation problem. Placement will decide the location of cell instances while routing designs the actual connection between cells. However, the misalignment in the objectives of the sub-problems might lead to a degradation in the final solution quality. Therefore, in the “Routing with Cell Movement Advanced” problem, a global routing engine that can also conduct cell movement is needed. Based on an existing placement and routing solution, a limited portion of cells can be moved and reconnected to further reduce the total routed wire length.

Shiju LIN and  Jinwei LIU also won the second place in 2021 CADathlon at ICCAD. The CADathlon is a challenging, 24-hour, programming competition focusing on practical problems at the forefront of Computer-Aided Design, and Electronic Design Automation in particular. The contest emphasizes the knowledge of algorithmic techniques for CAD applications, problem-solving and programming skills, as well as teamwork. It consists of six problems in the following areas: Circuit Design & Analysis, Physical Design & Design for Manufacturability, Logic & High-Level Synthesis, System Design & Analysis, Functional Verification & Testing, Future technologies (Bio-EDA, Security, AI, etc.). The team “Whatever” (Shiju Lin and Jinwei Liu) has obtained the best scores for half of the problems.

From left to right: Shiju LIN, Jinwei LIU and Tianji LIU
From left to right: Jinwei LIU, Xinshi ZANG and Fangzhou WANG