Welcome to IBM Analog Hardware Acceleration Kit’s documentation!

IBM Analog Hardware Acceleration Kit is an open source Python toolkit for exploring and using the capabilities of in-memory computing devices in the context of artificial intelligence.


The toolkit consists of two main components:

PyTorch integration

A series of primitives and features that allow using the toolkit within PyTorch:

  • Analog neural network modules (fully connected layer, 1d/2d/3d convolution layers, sequential container).

  • Analog training using torch training workflow:

    • Analog torch optimizers (SGD).

    • Analog in-situ training using customizable device models and algorithms (Tiki-Taka).

  • Analog inference using torch inference workflow:

    • State-of-the-art statistical model of a phase-change memory (PCM) array calibrated on hardware measurements from a 1 million PCM devices chip.

    • Hardware-aware training with hardware non-idealities and noise included in the forward pass.

Analog devices simulator

A high-performant (CUDA-capable) C++ simulator that allows for simulating a wide range of analog devices and crossbar configurations by using abstract functional models of material characteristics with adjustable parameters. Feature include:

  • Forward pass output-referred noise and device fluctuations, as well as adjustable ADC and DAC discretization and bounds

  • Stochastic update pulse trains for rows and columns with finite weight update size per pulse coincidence

  • Device-to-device systematic variations, cycle-to-cycle noise and adjustable asymmetry during analog update

  • Adjustable device behavior for exploration of material specifications for training and inference

  • State-of-the-art dynamic input scaling, bound management, and update management schemes

Other features

Along with the two main components, the toolkit includes other functionality:

  • A library of device presets that are calibrated to real hardware data and device presets that are based on models in the literature, along with config preset that specify a particular device and optimizer choice.

  • A module for executing high-level use cases (“experiments”), such as neural network training with minimal code overhead.

  • Integration with the AIHW Composer platform that allows executing experiments in the cloud.


This library is currently in beta and under active development. Please be mindful of potential issues and keep an eye for improvements, new features and bug fixes in upcoming versions.


from torch import Tensor
from torch.nn.functional import mse_loss

from aihwkit.nn import AnalogLinear
from aihwkit.optim import AnalogSGD

x = Tensor([[0.1, 0.2, 0.4, 0.3], [0.2, 0.1, 0.1, 0.3]])
y = Tensor([[1.0, 0.5], [0.7, 0.3]])

# Define a network using a single Analog layer.
model = AnalogLinear(4, 2)

# Use the analog-aware stochastic gradient descent optimizer.
opt = AnalogSGD(model.parameters(), lr=0.1)

# Train the network.
for epoch in range(10):
    pred = model(x)
    loss = mse_loss(pred, y)

    print('Loss error: {:.16f}'.format(loss))

How to cite

In case you are using the IBM Analog Hardware Acceleration Kit for your research, please cite the AICAS21 paper that describes the toolkit:


Malte J. Rasch, Diego Moreda, Tayfun Gokmen, Manuel Le Gallo, Fabio Carta, Cindy Goldberg, Kaoutar El Maghraoui, Abu Sebastian, Vijay Narayanan. “A flexible and fast PyTorch toolkit for simulating training and inference on analog crossbar arrays”, 2021 IEEE 3rd International Conference on Artificial Intelligence Circuits and Systems



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