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Blast Fusion now supports ECSM for accurate delay prediction of nanometer and low power designs

Magma Design Automation, a provider of chip design solutions, and Cadence Design Systems today announced that Magma’s integrated circuit (IC) implementation system now supports the effective current source model (ECSM) from Cadence as the industry’s most accurate timing model. Already used by the Cadence SoC Encounter Global Physical Synthesis RTL-to-GDSII system, ECSM is now the timing model of choice for Magma’s Blast Fusion.

ECSM improves delay calculation accuracy by modeling a cell’s output drive as a current source rather than a voltage source. Current sources are more effective at tracking non-linear transistor switching behavior and permit highly accurate modeling of long complex interconnects, common in many of today’s largest nanometer low power designs.

“As part of our efforts to provide Magma customers with more advanced timing analysis, Blast Fusion now supports ECSM as our delay modeling of choice for timing signoff,” said Premal Buch, general manager of Magma’s Analysis and Signoff Business Unit. “Achieving signoff-quality results in an RTL-to-GDSII flow depends on high-quality models, and nanometer signoff success hinges on the availability and use of accurate delay data, which ECSM provides using an extension to the current de-facto industry-standard format.”

The industry's traditional library model, which represents delay as either a 2-D table or a polynomial equation, does not provide the level of accuracy demanded at nanometer geometries. This model begins to break down at 130 nanometers and is especially problematic at 90 and 65 nanometers. A leading-edge timing model offering accurate and practical modeling of nanometer delay is mandatory, particularly for today’s low-power applications which require a more effective trade-off between performance and power.

ECSM library support is already available from major IP vendors, and both Cadence and Magma provide characterisation software to generate ECSM library data. Cadence and Magma worked together to ensure that ECSM can be combined with existing delay models into a single format. This enables customers to utilise the power of ECSM while maintaining a consistent set of timing views that support legacy flows.

“Recognising the accuracy and ease of modeling advantage of ECSM over the current traditional solution, we’ve made a conscious decision to open it up for use by the industry at large,” said Wei-Jin Dai, vice president, Encounter platform at Cadence. “We are pleased by Magma’s decision to leverage ECSM in their product solutions and expect the rest of the industry to follow suit. ECSM provides accurate timing models for higher quality designs, improved Quality of Silicon (QoS), and faster time-to-market with first-pass silicon.”

About Magma Design Automation
Magma provides leading software for designing highly complex integrated circuits, by maximising Quality of Results with respect to area, timing and power, while reducing overall design cycles and costs. Magma provides a complete RTL-to-GDSII design flow that includes design planning, prototyping, synthesis, place & route, and signal and power integrity chip design capabilities in a single executable, offering “The Fastest Path from RTL to Silicon”™. Magma’s software also includes products for advanced physical synthesis and architecture development tools for programmable logic devices (PLDs); capacitance extraction; and characterisation and modeling. The company’s stock trades on Nasdaq under the ticker symbol LAVA. Visit Magma Design Automation on the Web at

About Cadence
Cadence is the largest supplier of electronic design technologies and engineering services. Cadence solutions are used to accelerate and manage the design of semiconductors, computer systems, networking and telecommunications equipment, consumer electronics, and a variety of other electronics-based products. With approximately 4,850 employees and 2003 revenues of approximately $1.1 billion, Cadence has sales offices, design centers, and research facilities around the world. The company is headquartered in San Jose, Calif., and traded on the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq under the symbol CDN. More information about the company, its products and services is available at

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