The rise of Skynet: Arm to use Arm-based AWS Graviton2 instances to design better CPUs

ARM Neoverse N1
(Image credit: ARM)

AWS has announced that Arm will leverage its cloud computing platform for the vast majority of its electronic design automation (EDA) workloads.

The UK-based chip designer will migrate its EDA workloads to AWS and it will leverage AWS Graviton2-based instances powered by Arm Neoverse cores to do so. 

The move will pave the way for the transformation of the semiconductor industry to move to the cloud instead of having to rely on on-premises data centers for the computationally intensive work of verifying semiconductor designs as it has done in the past.

Since beginning its cloud migration with AWS, Arm has seen a six times improvement in performance time for EDA workflows. The company plans to reduce its global datacenter footprint by at least 45 percent and its on-premises compute by 80 percent once its migration to AWS is complete.

Electronic design automation

EDA workflows are complex and include front-end design, simulation and verification as well as increasingly large back-end workloads that include time and power analysis, design rule checks and other applications to prepare chips for production. These workflows traditionally take many months or even years to produce a new device such as a system-on-a-chip and involve massive compute power.

By migrating its EDA workflows to AWS, Arm will be able to overcome the constraints of traditionally managed EDA workflows and gain elasticity through massive scalable computer power which will enable it to run simulations in parallel, simplify telemetry and analysis, reduce its iteration time for semiconductor designs and add testing cycles without impacting its delivery schedule.

President of IPG at Arm Rene Haas explained in a press release how moving its EDA workloads to AWS will help the company save time while reducing costs, saying:

“Through our collaboration with AWS, we’ve focused on improving efficiencies and maximizing throughput to give precious time back to our engineers to focus on innovation,” said Rene Haas, President, IPG, Arm. “Now that we can run on Amazon EC2 using AWS Graviton2 instances with Arm Neoverse-based processors, we’re optimizing engineering workflows, reducing costs, and accelerating project timelines to deliver powerful results to our customers more quickly and cost effectively than ever before.”

Anthony Spadafora

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.