A technical paper titled “Towards Sustainable Computing: Assessing the Carbon Footprint of Heterogeneous Systems” was published by researchers at Arizona State University and University of Minnesota.


“Decades of progress in energy-efficient and low-power design have successfully reduced the operational carbon footprint in the semiconductor industry. However, this has led to an increase in embodied emissions, encompassing carbon emissions arising from design, manufacturing, packaging, and other infrastructural activities. While existing research has developed tools to analyze embodied carbon at the computer architecture level for traditional monolithic systems, these tools do not apply to near-mainstream heterogeneous integration (HI) technologies. HI systems offer significant potential for sustainable computing by minimizing carbon emissions through two key strategies: reducing computation by reusing pre-designed chiplet IP blocks and adopting hierarchical approaches to system design. The reuse of chiplets across multiple designs, even spanning multiple generations of integrated circuits (ICs), can substantially reduce embodied carbon emissions throughout the operational lifespan. This paper introduces a carbon analysis tool specifically designed to assess the potential of HI systems in facilitating greener VLSI system design and manufacturing approaches. The tool takes into account scaling, chiplet and packaging yields, design complexity, and even carbon overheads associated with advanced packaging techniques employed in heterogeneous systems. Experimental results demonstrate that HI can achieve a reduction of embodied carbon emissions up to 70% compared to traditional large monolithic systems. These findings suggest that HI can pave the way for sustainable computing practices, contributing to a more environmentally conscious semiconductor industry.”

Find the technical paper here. Published: June 2023 (preprint).

Chhabria, Vidya A., Chetan Choppali Sudarshan, Sarma Vrudhula, and Sachin S. Sapatnekar. “Towards Sustainable Computing: Assessing the Carbon Footprint of Heterogeneous Systems.” arXiv preprint arXiv:2306.09434 (2023).

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Source: https://semiengineering.com/heterogeneous-integration-as-a-path-towards-sustainable-computing-using-chiplets/