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Graduate Hardware Design Engineer


The Datapath Group is an applied research group that focuses on all aspects of architecting, designing, optimising and verifying mathematical hardware. The group, embedded in the Graphics division, acts as an internal consultancy to the various technology divisions within Imagination Technologies. We are looking to grow the part of the team that focuses on architecting and designing numerical hardware and includes formal verification. With breadth and depth, this role offers a unique view of the company's IP and the opportunity to become a subject specialist.


The Datapath Group implements, researches architectures, verifies and validates arithmetic hardware modules. The group is founded on the premise that hardware can be made more reliable, faster, smaller and more power efficient through the application of mathematical and logical reasoning. We act as an internal consultancy to Imagination's IP groups; gathering requirements for designs or architectural questions, performing research and design before returning optimised and verified hardware and software models to the commissioner. We also develop a library of verified components for off-the-shelf use.

Datapath offers considerable challenge in terms of verification, validation and power, area and delay optimisation. Our work covers the whole range of algorithms found within Imagination's various cores and throughout the design cycle. From critical and challenging requirements such as timing closure, area reduction, conformance testing, power reduction and datapath netlist verification through to architectural space exploration and accuracy experiments prior to finalising RTL coding. The group operates with a deep and broad view of Imagination's IP.

We explore many avenues to further our research interests. Our work has spawned numerous patents and academic & technical papers, some of which are presented at academic and technical conferences. Our research also extends into new synthesis and formal verification methods for which we have close links with the relevant research and development departments of our tool vendors. When research requires it, we collaborate with relevant academics and university departments.

We prefer mentoring to training. We invest in intra and inter group training materials, internals tools and continuously explore ways to optimise our design process.


Working as part of a dynamic team, you will have some or all of the following responsibilities:

  • Understand, crystallise and extract the requirements for mathematical hardware blocks with various engineers throughout Imagination.
  • Research various hardware architectures for implementing the math intensive blocks
  • Design and implementation of optimised RTL.
  • Create C++/SystemC models for the modules.
  • Perform formal verification on the resultant designs.
  • Research into cutting edge techniques for implementing a vast range of mathematical operations in silicon, becoming a Datapath Expert in the process.
  • Educate other members of the company on datapath design.

We seek candidates that improve design processes and operations – we value your input into all parts of the company. We attempt to address the most challenging questions in regard to Datapath design. Your work will have a tangible benefit, your brain will be taxed and your time will be well spent. 

Target Capabilities and Skills

As a consultancy we value insight over experience – languages and technologies can be learnt.  There is no such thing as a stupid question – in fact these are opportunities for invention. We highly value the clear delivery of complex ideas; whether written or verbal. Having the patience and skill to explain intricate ideas to a wide range of audiences is invaluable. The ability to deliver any point along the design time / quality curve is essential – i.e. pragmatic designing at speed for some projects and intricate and detailed design on other projects.

Required Skills

  • Understanding of hardware design, and of mathematical hardware implementations
  • Knowledge of hardware optimisation techniques for improved delay, area and power
  • Solid Mathematical Background
  • Excellent Creative Problem Solving Skills
  • Attention to Detail

Desired Skills

  • Experience optimising arithmetic hardware
  • Understanding of floating point arithmetic and implementation
  • Appreciation of low power Datapath techniques
  • Formal Verification Experience
  • Strong academics and relevant work experience would also be highly valued

Personal Attributes

The successful candidate will be very pragmatic but with an inquisitive nature and flare for detailed analysis as and when the need arises. They will be able to work out what people need rather than simply what they want; negotiating specifications and requirements as required.

The successful candidate will be/have:

  • Self-starter – able to work both alone and as part of a team
  • Friendly and Patient - outgoing personality, gets on with all types of people
  • Tenacious - determined not to let anything stop getting the job done
  • Open - enjoys working in an informal environment
  • Dedicated - willingness to work from time to time over extended hours in order to achieve goals set by immediate manager or demanded by business
  • A passion for excellence and attention to detail
  • Team player
  • Excellent communicator
  • Ability to imagine and implement improvements to the whole variety of processes
  • Consistent ability to challenge the status quo

Working Environment

Friendly, dynamic small design team. Work is generally done alone with strong collaboration between members of the group and periodic internal customer involvement. Discussions with tool vendors occurring at regular intervals.


2.1 or 1st Class Degree and Masters in Electrical Engineering, or a Computing discipline with significant hardware content.

Travel Requirements

Occasional travel undertaken to technical/academic conferences and other IMG offices.

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