Reconfigurable devices for high performance communications
The communication part of applications is one of the main bottlenecks for the performance of parallel and distributed systems because of the high synchronisation and transmission penalties. One of the last departures from mainstream networking is the use of reconfigurable devices (FPGAs) to implement custom made interconnection infrastructures. NetFPGA and Extoll devices are just a few examples of this approach. However the use of this kind of devices generates new exciting research questions. First of all a lack of standardisation makes understanding these technologies and how to extract all the potential benefits a very challenging issue. Furthermore, the designs provided with these devices may not be optimal for all the scenarios of interest. For this reason new architectures may need to be developed. The candidate will have access to those two technologies and also to general purpose, but communication-oriented Xilinx Kintex 7 devices.