Democratizing Hardware Design

The OpenROAD project attacks the barriers of Cost, Expertise and Uncertainty (i.e., Risk) that block the feasibility of hardware design in advanced technologies.

About OpenROAD

Problem: Hardware design requires too much effort, cost and time.
Challenge: Costs and the “expertise gap” block system designers’ access to advanced technology.
Objective:  Enable no-human-in-loop, 24-hour design to remove the barrier to hardware innovation

Foundations and Realization of Open, Accessible Design

Prof. Kahng & the OpenROAD team are aiming to develop open-source tools that achieve autonomous, 24-hour layout implementation.

PowerPoint & video presentation from 2021 ERI Summit

Our Goals

24-hour, No-Human-In-The-Loop layout design for SOC with no Power-Performance-Area (PPA) loss Tapeout-capable tools in source code form, with permissive licensing → seed future “Linux of EDA”


  • Create new “Base Technologies” that enable 24-hour, autonomous design
    • Extreme partitioning (bite-sized problems)
    • Parallel search and optimization
    • Machine learning: models of tools, designs
  • New paradigm for design tools and methods: autonomy first
  • Bring down barriers to democratize HW design

The Problem

Our Approach

  • No Humans: tools must adapt and self-tune, must never get stuck unexpectedly
  • 24 hours: extreme partitioning of problems
    • parallel search on cloud
    • machine learning for predictability
  • Mantra: Correctness and safety by construction
  • Mantra: Embrace freedom from choice
  • Mantra: Often, only one thread needs to succeed

- 54 days ago

Check out and register for this key course offering by UCSC extension- starts Oct 5. Learn key timing concepts on analysis and closure. OpenROAD and Open STA are included - course material and labs @OpenROAD_EDA #sta #timingclosure @UCSCExtension
h J R

- 60 days ago

OpenROAD @OpenROAD_EDA tools will soon be featured in VLSI Design courses at the UCSC Silicon Valley Extension ! We will be offering courses on Physical design, Timing analysis and more. Stay tuned here for details:
h J R

- 60 days ago

Check out OpenROAD at the Career fair hosted by UCSC Extension, Sep 29, 6:45-7 p.m. A great opportunity to engage with our expert and start your career in the exciting and emerging field of Open source EDA #VLSI @OpenROAD_EDA !
h J R

- 137 days ago

Thanks to all who filled in the planning form for the DAC-2022 #59DAC "Open-Source EDA and Benchmarking Summit" Birds-of-a-Feather meeting, TODAY 7-10pm, Room 3000, Moscone West. All are welcome, no badge needed. The agenda is here: Hope to see you there!
h J R