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 3.1.2. Accelerator Function Unit

 Note: The AFU functional definition is outside the scope of the CAIA.

 A CAIA-compliant processor includes one or more AFUs. The AFUs are user-defined functions for accelerating applications. They typically process data and initiate any required data transfers to perform their allocated tasks.

 The purpose of an AFU is to provide applications with a higher computational unit density for hardware acceleration of functions to improve the performance of the application and off-load the host processor. Using an AFU for application acceleration allows for cost-effective processing over a wide range of applications.

 When an application requests use of an AFU, a process element is added to the process-element linked list describing the application's process state. The process element also contains a work element descriptor (WED) provided by the application. The WED can contain the full description of the job to be performed or a pointer to other main memory structures in the application's memory space. Several programming models are described providing for an AFU to be used by any application or for an AFU to be dedicated to a single application.

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