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The computer aided design (CAD) system, AVOCAD, is intended for designing applications specific very large-scale integrated (VLSI) circuits. CAD was developed taking into account contemporary needs of IC designers. In AVOCAD all necessary functions used for schematic IC design are realized; applying original methods and algorithms allows surpassing similar systems on number of parameters. At present the schematic designing and simulating subsystem is realized in AVOCAD. The subsystem consists of two basic parts: developer environment and simulation program.
Developer environment represents:
Integrated environment managing IC designing process;
Full-function schematic capture which at the same time represents design environment and integrated shell for utility launching;
Library element images editor;
Model parameters editor;
Program for visualization of simulation results and its analysis;
Input and output languages translators;
Program for designs attestation, which allows specifying a batch of simulation tasks and fulfilling the simultaneous remote starting of these tasks on several computers.
Main characteristics of developer environment:
The program is developed under Microsoft Windows, and due to close cooperation with IC designers has friendly user interface.
Allows organizing schematic IC designs as drafts, schemes and projects. Also, complex-hierarchy and reference project structures are supported. The reference structure is used for organization of circuits libraries.
It has a wide set of options and utilities necessary for circuit drawing (color palette adjustment, grid settings, scheme partitioning into several drafts, specifying draft sizes, printing, print preview, elements auto-numbering, drawing buses, etc.)
Supports multiple-level hierarchy at indication of "current into pin" and "voltage level" markers.
Supports specifying of parametrical hierarchical blocks.
Allows launching of input/output languages compilers. Supports the following output languages: HSPICE-netlist, SPECTRE-netlist, SPICE3e2-netlist. Input languages supported: HSPICE-netlist.
Allows creating simulation profiles, where designers can specify parameters for simulation, models of used elements, simulator type and options, etc.
Allows specifying custom libraries containing images (graphics) of circuit elements.
Allows launching other tools used for designing.
Controls IC simulation starting and simulation process.
Environment is developed taking into account the opportunity of different simulation programs usage (such as HSPICE, SPECTRE, etc.) . The third party simulation programs can be launched from remote UNIX-platforms. In this case, visualization of simulation results is fulfilled in the AVOCAD visualization program.
Main characteristics of the simulation program:
The simulation program is integrated directly in the schematic editor and uses a common database with the editor that allows reducing time consumption of scheme preparation for the subsequent simulation run.
The basic feature of the simulation program is its orientation to carrying out the analysis of the integrated circuit with irregular structure containing tens and hundred thousands of elements (transistors) for minimal time with simulation accuracy preservation.
The following types of analysis are realized: DC analysis, TRAN analysis, AC analysis and parametric SWEEP for all analyses mentioned above. The following models are supported: resistor (RES), physical resistor (RES_PHY), capacitor (CAP), inductor (IND), diode (DIOD), MOS transistor (Level 3, BSIM3v3, BSIM4), bipolar transistor (Gummel-Poon model), dependent and independent current and voltage sources similar to HSPICE description (VDC, VEXP, VPULSE, VSIN, VPWL, VSFFM, IDC, IEXP, IPULSE, ISIN, IPWL, ISFFM).
The simulation program is being developed that works independently from developer environment. This version of the program can also work under OS UNIX.