This article examines implementation techniques using the ARM Power Management Kit (PMK), a collection of physical IP components. It is the first in a series of three ARM IQ articles looking at power-saving techniques in chip design.


One way to reduce power is to divide a design into separate power domains. These domains are simply segments of a chip that are electrically isolated. This segmentation allows the voltage (and frequency) of each domain to be controlled independently, allowing each domain to be powered off, or to run at different voltages and/or frequencies. The ARM PMK enables these domains and associated low-power techniques. The PMK contains a number of general cell types, including power gates, retention flip-flops, and isolation cells, each of which is discussed in detail.

Reprinted in its entirety from ARM IQ Vol. 6, No. 2, 2007