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Broadcom adds silicon AI features to speed new Trident networking chip

Broadcom Limited company logo is pictured on an office building in Rancho Bernardo, California May 12, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo
Broadcom Limited company logo is pictured on an office building in Rancho Bernardo, California May 12, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo

Broadcom (AVGO.O), a multinational technology corporation, announced on Thursday that it has incorporated artificial intelligence capabilities into a new version of one of its signature networking chips. The business did this to facilitate the more efficient movement of information between data centers.

The efficiency of Broadcom’s Trident networking processors is improved, as is the chip’s capacity to do additional jobs, such as network security, when a portion of the silicon in the processors is dedicated to artificial intelligence. Additional network bandwidth and decreased power consumption are two examples of the typical performance enhancements of the new microprocessor.

Transferring data within enormous AI clusters is one of the most critical challenges arising during the construction of these clusters.

A senior official in Broadcom’s Core Switching Group named Robin Grindley stated in an interview that the chip, known as a Trident 5-X12, has the potential to assist in alleviating some of the congestion occurring in the network. Because software is significantly slower than hardware, certain networked computing activities, such as artificial intelligence, can only be enhanced by adding extra capabilities to a chip.

“That’s what the neural network does – it looks across all packets, all traffic patterns, so it’s trying to identify these things that the standard approach just wouldn’t be able to catch,” according to Grindley.

The artificial intelligence component of the chip may be activated after a client has constructed an AI model based on the traffic within their data center. The data center operators can train a model to identify particular kinds of undesirable traffic, such as denial-of-service assaults or network traffic congestion. A version of the model is then loaded into the chip after it has been developed, and it can play the role of the fic.

According to Grindley, engineers at the firm decided to incorporate the artificial intelligence elements around two years ago after the company had already incorporated programmability into an earlier chip version.

Customers considered to be “qualified” are receiving the updated version of the Trident, which was constructed using manufacturing technology that is 5 nanometers.

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