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Behavioural synthesis of analogue integrated circuits

Parish, Simon James (2010)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Abstract

Automatic synthesis of analogue circuits remains a very manually intensive task despite huge strides in the field of Electronic Design Automation (EDA) in recent decades. Genetic Algorithms (GAs) are biologically inspired search algorithms which have previously shown some promise in this field. Their ability to form the basis of a practically useful synthesis system is investigated. A GA-based experimental synthesis system is implemented, which employs a Genetic Programming (GP) style encoding scheme based on tree structures, and a novel fitness function based on pole-zero analysis. The system is capable of synthesising circuit topologies entirely from scratch, but can also utilise user-provided circuit knowledge of arbitrary detail and complexity. The system uses a SPICE-based circuit simulator as a circuit evaluator. Experimental results reveal a number of issues that adversely impact the ability of GAs to reliably synthesise practically useful analogue circuits. These include considerable resource requirements and a tendency for synthesised circuits to contain an unnecessarily large number of components. Most serious is the sensitivity of analogue circuits to changes in topology and/or sizing. GAs are shown to be currently ill-suited to the problem domain of analogue circuit synthesis. The problem of SPICE non-convergence on the GA is also considered.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
Department:School of Electronic, Electrical and Computing Engineering
Subjects:TK Electrical engineering. Electronics Nuclear engineering
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:549
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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