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Ceva Provides Homogenous AI Acceleration to Third-Gen Engine

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Ceva has revamped its NeuPro AI accelerator engine IP, including specialised co-processors for Winograd transforms and sparsity operations and a general-purpose vector processing unit alongside the engine’s MAC array. The brand new era engine, NeuPro-M, can enhance efficiency 5-15X (relying on the precise workload) in comparison with Ceva’s second era NeuPro-S core (launched Sept 2019). For instance, ResNet-50 efficiency was improved 4.9X with out utilizing the specialised engines – boosted to 14.3X when utilizing specialised co-processors, in accordance with Ceva. Outcomes for Yolo-v3 confirmed comparable speedups. The core’s energy effectivity is predicted to be 24 TOPS/Watt for 1.25 GHz operation.

Ceva NeuPro-M performance
Efficiency for Ceva’s NeuPro-M (NPM) engine versus Ceva’s earlier era of engine, the NeuPro-S (Supply: Ceva)
Ceva NeuPro-M Core
Ceva’s NeuPro-M structure embody a shared native reminiscence for the completely different accelerators throughout the engine (Supply: Ceva)

The NeuPro-M engine structure permits for parallel processing on two ranges — between the engines (if a number of engines are used), and throughout the engines themselves. The principle MAC array has 4000 MACs able to combined precision operation (2-16 bits). Alongside this are new, specialised co-processors for some AI duties. Native reminiscence in every engine breaks the dependence on the core shared reminiscence and on exterior DDR; the co-processors in every engine can work in parallel on the identical reminiscence, although they generally switch information from one to a different instantly (with out passing by reminiscence). The scale of this native reminiscence is configurable based mostly on community measurement, enter picture measurement, variety of engines within the design and clients’ DDR latency and bandwidth.

One of many specialised co-processors is a Winograd remodel accelerator (the Winograd remodel is used to approximate convolution operations utilizing much less compute). Ceva has structured this to speed up 3×3 convolutions – the most typical in right now’s neural networks. Ceva’s Winograd remodel can roughly double efficiency for 8-bit 3×3 convolution layers, with solely 0.5% prediction accuracy discount (utilizing the Winograd algorithm out of the field/untrained). It will also be used with 4, 12 and 16-bit information sorts. Outcomes are extra pronounced for networks with extra 3×3 convolutions current (see efficiency graph above for ResNet-50 vs Yolo-v3).

Ceva’s unstructured sparsity engine can make the most of zeros current in neural community weights and information, although it really works particularly nicely if the community is pre-trained utilizing Ceva’s instruments to encourage sparsity. Positive factors of three.5X could be made underneath sure situations. Unstructured sparsity strategies assist keep prediction accuracy versus structured schemes.


Ceva’s Deep Neural Community (CDNN) compiler and toolkit permits hardware-aware coaching. A system structure planner device configures standards like in-engine reminiscence measurement and optimizes the variety of NeuPro-M engines required for the appliance. CDNN’s compiler options uneven quantization capabilities. General Ceva’s stack can help neural networks of all differing kinds with many lots of of layers. CDNN-Invite presents the flexibility to attach clients’ personal customized accelerator IP into designs. Networks or community layers could be saved personal from CDNN if required.

Security and safety

Buyer’s neural community fashions could be closely-guarded IP so there’s a have to maintain weights and information safe. The NeuPro-M structure helps safe entry within the type of elective root of belief, authentication and cryptographic accelerators. NeuPro-‘s safety IP originated with Intrinsix, an organization Ceva acquired in Could 2021, which is concerned within the improvement of chiplets and safe processors for aerospace and protection clients together with Darpa. Crucially, it’s relevant to each SoC and die-to-die safety.

For the automotive market, NeuPro-M cores together with Ceva’s CDNN compiler and toolkit adjust to the ISO26262 ASIL-B normal and meets high quality assurance requirements IATF16949 and A-Spice.


Two pre-configured cores can be found now: the NPM11 with a single NeuPro-M engine which may obtain as much as 20 TOPS at 1.25 GHz, and the NPM18 with eight NeuPro-M engines, which may obtain as much as 160 TOPS at 1.25 GHz.


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