The Analysis and Mapping of Cyclic Circuits with Boolean Satisfiability

J. Backes, B. Fett, M. Riedel

Technical Report. 2011

The accepted wisdom is that combinational circuits must have acyclic (i.e., loop-free or feed-forward) topologies. And yet simple examples suggest that this need not be so. Prior work advocated the design of cyclic combinational circuits (i.e., circuits with loops or feedback paths). A methodology was proposed for optimizing circuits by introducing cycles at the technology- independent stage of synthesis. Efficient synthesis is predicated on efficient analysis. Prior methods for analysis were based on binary decision diagrams (BDDs). In this paper, a much more efficient technique is proposed based on Boolean satisfiability (SAT). Validation is performed both at a network level, in terms of functional dependencies, as well as at a gate level, after mapping to a library. When mapping breaks the validity of a combinational circuit, SAT-based analysis returns satisfying assignments; these assignments are used to modify the mapping in order to ensure that the circuit remains combinational. The effectiveness of the analysis and mapping algorithms is demonstrated on standard benchmarks.