CiM3D: Comparator-in-memory designs using monolithic 3-D technology for accelerating data-intensive applications

Akshay Krishna Ramanathan, Srivatsa Srinivasa Rangachar, Hariram Thirucherai Govindarajan, Je Min Hung, Chun Ying Lee, Cheng Xin Xue, Sheng Po Huang, Fu Kuo Hsueh, Chang Hong Shen, Jia Min Shieh, Wen Kuan Yeh, Mon Shu Ho, Jack Sampson, Meng Fan Chang, Vijaykrishnan Narayanan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The compare operation is widely used in many applications, from fundamental sorting to primitive operations in the database and AI systems. We present SRAM-based 3-D-CAM circuit designs using a monolithic 3-D (M3D) integration process for realizing beyond-Boolean in-memory compare operation without any area overheads. We also fabricated a processing-in-memory (PiM) macro with the same 3-D-CAM circuit using M3D for performing massively parallel compare operations used in the database, machine learning, and scientific applications. We show various system designs with the 3-D-CAM supporting operations, such as data filtering, sorting, and sparse matrix-matrix multiplication (SpGEMM). Our systems exhibit up to 272 ×, 200 ×, and 226 × speedups and 151 ×, 37 ×, and 156 × energy savings compared to systems using near memory compute for the data filtering, sorting, and SpGEMM applications, respectively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-87
Number of pages9
JournalIEEE Journal on Exploratory Solid-State Computational Devices and Circuits
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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