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On-Chip BERT Oscilloscope

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000125125D
Publication Date: 2005-May-19
Document File: 3 page(s) / 230K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Disclosed is a method that uses an on-chip BERT Oscilloscope (OCBO) to stimulate and capture PCI Express compliance validation waveforms. Benefits include decreasing validation times and increasing accuracy.

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On-Chip BERT Oscilloscope

Disclosed is a method that uses an on-chip BERT Oscilloscope (OCBO) to stimulate and capture PCI Express compliance validation waveforms. Benefits include decreasing validation times and increasing accuracy.

Background

Currently, validating the electrical performance of high-speed serial links is becoming increasingly difficult for the following reasons:

 

§         Inability to measure BER at the Rx Pad (This inability often requires Pin-to-pad guard banding.)

§         Takes a considerable amount of time to probe all lanes of a link

§         Requires costly measurement equipment

§         Requires invasive probing, which can significantly alter the electrical characteristics of the interconnect

§         Allows the validation of links which employ Rx equalization, a task which is difficult to accomplish using external measurement equipment

Also, there is currently no device on the market that incorporates features of pattern generation and error checking, programmable PLL bandwidths, the ability to offset Rx timing strobe and

Vref

,

Tx

jitter injection, variable Tx voltage swing, and the ability to offset termination impedance. 

General Description

The OCBO is a hardware component used to stimulate and capture PCI Express compliance validation waveforms. It works in conjunction with analysis software operating on a laptop computer, via a USB 2.0 interface to the chip. When designed into a compliance load board (CLB), it characterizes up to 16 lanes (transmitter or receiver – operating as either a pattern generator or as a bit error rate detector and combination oscilloscope). As a CLB, it is useful in compliance plug fests to f...