M.Sc Thesis

M.Sc StudentVainbrand Dmitri
SubjectNetwork-on-Chip Architecture for Neural Networks
DepartmentDepartment of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Supervisor PROFESSOR EMERITUS Ran Ginosar
Full Thesis textFull thesis text - English Version


Providing highly flexible connectivity is a major architectural challenge for hardware implementation of reconfigurable neural networks. We perform an analytical evaluation and comparison of different configurable interconnect architectures (mesh NoC, tree, shared bus and point-to-point) emulating variants of two neural network topologies (having full and random configurable connectivity). We derive analytical expressions and asymptotic limits for performance (in terms of bandwidth) and cost (in terms of area and power) of the interconnect architectures considering three communication methods (unicast, multicast and broadcast). It is shown that multicast mesh NoC provides the highest performance/cost ratio and consequently it is the most suitable interconnect architecture for configurable neural network implementation. Routing table size requirements and their impact on scalability were analyzed. Modular hierarchical architecture based on multicast mesh NoC is proposed to allow large scale neural networks emulation. Simulation results successfully validate the analytical models and the asymptotic behavior of the network as a function of its size.