A Semantic Association Hardware Acceleration System for Integrated Product Data Management

J. Lane Thames, Oliver Eck, Dirk Schaefer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (SciVal)


Many modern products are complex systems comprised of highly integrated mechanical,
electrical, electronic, and software components, which are commonly known as mechatronic
systems. Similarly, product data and life-cycle management systems that support
the engineering and design of mechatronic systems are becoming complex and need to
store, retrieve, and process vast amounts of files associated with mechatronic products.
For many years, software developers and computer architects have benefited by continuous
increases in computational performance, as predicted by Moore’s law. However,
issues such as extreme power consumption have begun to limit certain types of performance
increases such as hardware clock rates. In an effort to find new ways to increase
computational performance, engineers and computer scientists have been investigating
new techniques such as hardware acceleration systems, reconfigurable computing, and
heterogeneous computing (HC). In light of these emerging computational paradigms, this
paper introduces a semantic association hardware acceleration system for integrated
product data management (PDM) based on semantic file systems. The concept of semantic
path merger (SPM) is described along with a discussion of its realization as a
hardware-based associative memory for accelerated semantic file retrieval. The energy
and retrieval performance metrics of the proposed hardware system is given along with
its comparative analysis with the industry standard content addressable memory (CAM).
The goal of the proposed system is to enhance the state-of-art for the field of heterogeneous
computing within the scope of computational platforms for design and engineering
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)031009-1 - 031009-11
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Computing and Information Science in Engineering
Issue number3
Early online date31 Aug 2012
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • semantic assiciation
  • product data management systems
  • heterogeneous computing
  • Information retrieval
  • hardware acceleration
  • low energy computing


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