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VLSI Design
Volume 2 (1994), Issue 1, Pages 1-16

Execution of VHDL Models Using Parallel Discrete Event Simulation Algorithms

University of Adelaide, Department of Computer Science, SA 5005, Australia

Received 17 February 1993; Revised 12 July 1993

Copyright © 1994 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In this paper, we discuss the use of parallel discrete event simulation (PDES) algorithms for execution of hardware models written in VHDL. We survey central event queue, conservative distributed and optimistic distributed PDES algorithms, and discuss aspects of the semantics of VHDL and VHDL-92 that affect the use of these algorithms in a VHDL simulator. Next, we describe an experiment performed as part of the Vsim Project at the University of Adelaide, in which a simulation kernel using the central event queue algorithm was developed. We present measurements taken from this kernel simulating some benchmark models. It appears that this technique, which is relatively simple to implement, is suitable for use on small scale multiprocessors (such as current desktop multiprocessor workstations), simulating behavioral and register transfer level models. However, the degree of useful parallelism achievable on gate level models with this technique appears to be limited.