Evolutionary algorithms for synthesis and optimisation of sequential logic circuits
Considerable progress has been made recently 1n the understanding of combinational logic optimization. Consequently a large number of university and industrial Electric Computing Aided Design (ECAD) programs are now available for optimal logic synthesis of combinational circuits. The progress with sequential logic synthesis and optimization, on the other hand, is considerably less mature. In recent years, evolutionary algorithms have been found to be remarkably effective way of using computers for solving difficult problems. This thesis is, in large part, a concentrated effort to apply this philosophy to the synthesis and optimization of sequential circuits. A state assignment based on the use of a Genetic Algorithm (GA) for the optimal synthesis of sequential circuits is presented. The state assignment determines the structure of the sequential circuit realizing the state machine and therefore its area and performances. The synthesis based on the GA approach produced designs with the smallest area to date. Test results on standard fmite state machine (FS:M) benchmarks show that the GA could generate state assignments, which required on average 15.44% fewer gates and 13.47% fewer literals compared with alternative techniques. Hardware evolution is performed through a succeSSlOn of changes/reconfigurations of elementary components, inter-connectivity and selection of the fittest configurations until the target functionality is reached. The thesis presents new approaches, which combine both genetic algorithm for state assignment and extrinsic Evolvable Hardware (EHW) to design sequential logic circuits. The implemented evolutionary algorithms are able to design logic circuits with size and complexity, which have not been demonstrated in published work. There are still plenty of opportunities to develop this new line of research for the synthesis, optimization and test of novel digital, analogue and mixed circuits. This should lead to a new generation of Electronic Design Automation tools.