Current-mode signaling in deep submicrometer global interconnects

Rizwan Bashirullah, Wentai Liu, Ralph K. Cavin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


This paper addresses propagation delay and power dissipation for current mode signaling in deep submicrometer global interconnects. Based on the effective lumped element resistance and capacitance approximation of distributed RC lines, simple yet accurate closed-form expressions of delay and power dissipation are presented. A new closed-form solution of delay under step input excitation is first developed, exhibiting an accuracy that is within 5% of SPICE simulations for a wide range of parameters. The usefulness of this solution is that resistive load termination for current mode signaling is accurately modeled. This model is then extended to a generalized delay formulation for ramp inputs with arbitrary rise time. Using these expressions, the optimum-line width the minimizes the total delay for current mode circuits is found. Additionally, a new power-dissipation model for current-mode signaling is developed to understand the design tradeoffs between current and voltage sensing. Based on the results and derived formulations, a comparison between voltage and current mode repeater insertion for long global deep submicrometer interconnects is presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)406-417
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) Systems
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2003 Jun

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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