Glossary Definition for Scan Design

Glossary Term: Scan Design 

Definition

A design technique in which the internal registers or flip-flops of a circuit can be chained, to allow an external circuit to easily read and write their contents.

When internal memory elements are not directly accessible from the circuit's outside pins, testing is difficult because their state is unknown. With scan design, a signal reconfigures the elements into a "scan chain" and their contents can be read and if desired, altered.

Synonyms
  • scan chain

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