Architecting More Than Moore – Wireless Plasticity for Heterogeneous Massive Computer Architectures


The main design principles in computer architecture have shifted from a monolithic scaling-driven approach towards an emergence of heterogeneous architectures that tightly co-integrate multiple specialized computing and memory units. This is motivated by the urgent need of very high parallelism and by energy constraints. This heterogeneous hardware specialization requires interconnection mechanisms that integrate the architecture. State-of-the-art approaches are 3D stacking and 2.D architectures complemented with a Network-on-Chip (NoC) to interconnect the components. However, such interconnects are fundamentally monolithic and rigid, and are unable to provide the efficiency and architectural flexibility required by current and future key ICT applications. The main challenge is to introduce diversification and specialization in heterogeneous processor architectures while ensuring their generality and scalability. In order to achieve this, the WiPLASH project aims to pioneer an on-chip wireless communication plane able to provide architectural plasticity, reconfigurability and adaptation to the application requirements with near-ASIC efficiency but without any loss of generality. For this, the WiPLASH consortium will provide solid experimental foundations of the key enablers of on-chip wireless communication at the functional unit level as well as their technological and architectural integration. The main goals are: (i) prototype a miniaturized and tunable graphene antenna in the terahertz band, (ii) co-integrate graphene RF components with submillimeter-wave transceivers and (iii) demonstrate low-power reconfigurable wireless chip-scale networks. The culminating goal is to demonstrate that the wireless plane offers the plasticity required by future computing platforms by improving at least one key application (mainly biologically-plausible deep learning architectures) by 10X in terms of execution speed and energy-delay product over a state-of-the-art baseline.

Project details

Unibo Team Leader: Davide Rossi

Unibo involved Department/s:
Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell'Energia Elettrica e dell'Informazione "Guglielmo Marconi"

Universitat Politecnica De Catalunya (Spain)

Other Participants:
ALMA MATER STUDIORUM - Università di Bologna (Italy)
Ibm Research Gmbh (Switzerland)
Epfl Ecole Politechnique Federale De Lausanne (Switzerland)
Rheinisch Westfaelische Technische Hochschule Aachen - Rwth (D) (Germany)
Gesellschaft Fur Angewandte Mikro Und Optoelektronik Mit Beschrankterhaftung Amo Gmbh (Germany)
Universität Siegen (Germany)

Total Eu Contribution: Euro (EUR) 2.994.765,00
Project Duration in months: 36
Start Date: 01/10/2019
End Date: 30/09/2022

Cordis webpage
Project website

Industry, innovation and infrastructure This project contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 863337 This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 863337