An energy-aware model for the logic synthesis of quantum-dot cellular automata

Frank Sill Torres, Robert Wille, Philipp Niemann, Rolf Drechsler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

154 Scopus citations


Quantum-dot cellular automata (QCA) are an emerging field-coupled nanotechnology with remarkable performance and energy efficiency. In order to enable the exploration of this technology, we propose a model for the logic synthesis of QCA circuits that, for the first time, considers and abstracts all main physical aspects - in particular, energy dissipation. To this end, we review in detail how energy is dissipated in QCA cells and present a corresponding environment that allows for the estimation of the energy dissipation with respect to any specific set of technology parameters. Based on that, we derive a model for logic synthesis. A case study confirms the accuracy of the proposed model and reveals that interconnections have a significant impact in this technology - motivating a more rigorous consideration. These findings eventually provide the basis for a new generation of synthesis approaches at the logic level that are explicitly dedicated to QCA systems.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8246526
Pages (from-to)3031-3041
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Energy dissipation
  • field-coupled nanocomputing
  • logic synthesis
  • quantum-dot cellular automata (QCA)


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