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Proceedings Paper

Plasmonics and the parallel programming problem
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Paper Abstract

While many parallel computers have been built, it has generally been too difficult to program them. Now, all computers are effectively becoming parallel machines. Biannual doubling in the number of cores on a single chip, or faster, over the coming decade is planned by most computer vendors. Thus, the parallel programming problem is becoming more critical. The only known solution to the parallel programming problem in the theory of computer science is through a parallel algorithmic theory called PRAM. Unfortunately, some of the PRAM theory assumptions regarding the bandwidth between processors and memories did not properly reflect a parallel computer that could be built in previous decades. Reaching memories, or other processors in a multi-processor organization, required off-chip connections through pins on the boundary of each electric chip. Using the number of transistors that is becoming available on chip, on-chip architectures that adequately support the PRAM are becoming possible. However, the bandwidth of off-chip connections remains insufficient and the latency remains too high. This creates a bottleneck at the boundary of the chip for a PRAM-On-Chip architecture. This also prevents scalability to larger "supercomputing" organizations spanning across many processing chips that can handle massive amounts of data. Instead of connections through pins and wires, power-efficient CMOS-compatible on-chip conversion to plasmonic nanowaveguides is introduced for improved latency and bandwidth. Proper incorporation of our ideas offer exciting avenues to resolving the parallel programming problem, and an alternative way for building faster, more useable and much more compact supercomputers.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 February 2007
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 6477, Silicon Photonics II, 64770M (9 February 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.698704
Show Author Affiliations
Uzi Vishkin, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)
Igor Smolyaninov, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)
Chris Davis, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6477:
Silicon Photonics II
Joel A. Kubby; Graham T. Reed, Editor(s)

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