2.4. Design Synthesis
Synthesis examines the logical completeness and consistency of the design, and checks for boundary connectivity and syntax errors. Synthesis also minimizes and optimizes design logic. For example, synthesis infers D flip flops, latches, and state machines from "behavioral" languages, such as Verilog HDL, VHDL, and SystemVerilog. Synthesis may replace operators, such as + or –, with modules from the Intel® Quartus® Prime IP library, when advantageous. During synthesis, the Compiler may change or remove user logic and design nodes. Intel® Quartus® Prime synthesis minimizes gate count, removes redundant logic, and ensures efficient use of device resources.
At the end of synthesis, the Compiler generates an atom netlist. Atom refers to the most basic hardware resource in the FPGA device. Atoms include logic cells organized into look-up tables, D flip flops, I/O pins, block memory resources, DSP blocks, and the connections between the atoms. The atom netlist is a database of the atom elements that design synthesis requires to implement the design in silicon.