China develops ‘Darwin’ chip to process information faster

Beijing, Dec 23 (IANS) Chinese researchers have developed “Darwin” – a new age information chip that will help run complex intelligent algorithms on small devices in the era of “Internet of Things”.

Artificial Neural Network (ANN) is a type of information processing system based on mimicking the principles of biological brains.

It has been broadly applied in application domains such as pattern recognition, automatic control, signal processing, decision support system and artificial intelligence.

Spiking Neural Network (SNN) is a type of biologically-inspired ANN that perform information processing based on discrete-time spikes.

It is more biologically realistic than classic ANNs, and can potentially achieve much better performance-power ratio.

Now, the researchers from Zhejiang University and Hangzhou Dianzi University in Hangzhou, China, have successfully developed the “Darwin” Neural Processing Unit (NPU), a neuromorphic hardware co-processor based on Spiking Neural Networks, fabricated by standard CMOS technology.

The research group led by Dr De Ma from Hangzhou Dianzi university and Dr Xiaolei Zhu from Zhejiang university developed a co-processor named as “Darwin”.

The Darwin NPU aims to provide hardware acceleration of intelligent algorithms, with target application domain of resource-constrained, low-power small embedded devices.

The successful development of “Darwin” demonstrates the feasibility of real-time execution of Spiking Neural Networks in resource-constrained embedded systems.

It supports flexible configuration of a multitude of parameters of the neural network, hence it can be used to implement different functionalities as configured by the user.

“Since it uses spikes for information processing and transmission,similar to biological neural networks, it may be suitable for analysis and processing of biological spiking neural signals, and building brain-computer interface systems by interfacing with animal or human brains,” the authors explained.

Its potential applications include intelligent hardware systems, robotics, brain-computer interfaces and others, said a paper that appeared in the journal Science China Press.

Leave a Reply

Please enter your comment!

The opinions, views, and thoughts expressed by the readers and those providing comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinions of or any employee thereof. is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the readers. Responsibility for the content of comments belongs to the commenter alone.  

We request the readers to refrain from posting defamatory, inflammatory comments and not indulge in personal attacks. However, it is obligatory on the part of to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments to the concerned authorities upon their request.

Hence we request all our readers to help us to delete comments that do not follow these guidelines by informing us at Lets work together to keep the comments clean and worthful, thereby make a difference in the community.

Please enter your name here