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Solving the ASIC Prototype Partition Problem with Synopsys ProtoCompiler

When developing a multi-FPGA prototype of an ASIC or SOC, you have many decisions to make: how to distribute clocks; where to put the daughter boards with real-world interfaces; which modules should be assigned to each FPGA; where and how many cables connect the FPGAs; and how to squeeze all the signals into those cables. All these decisions need to result in the fastest possible prototype that you can build and debug in the allotted time. And every week the RTL changes, and sometimes it seems that every decision you make forces you to revisit all the decisions that came before.There is a better way.

Vivado IP Integrator

Even the best "plug and play" IP blocks are far from fool-proof. One of the most challenging aspects of IP-based design can be getting the blocks stitched together properly, making sure you have the right version of all the IP blocks, and confirming the configuration of your whole design. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Tim Vanevenhoven about the powerful correct-by-construction automation built into the IP Integrator in Vivado Design Suite from Xilinx. IP Integrator seriously raises the bar on automation of IP-based design.

Accelerating System Bandwidth with FPGAs and Hybrid Memory Cube

Move over DDR, the Hybrid Memory Cube (HMC) is here! But, from a design perspective, care and feeding of the amazing HMC can be a lot more demanding than DDR. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton and Manish Deo of Altera explain how powerful FPGAs can help you tame the HMC in your next design.

Protium Rapid Prototyping Platform

Building a robust prototype involves a lot more than just throwing a bunch of big FPGAs on a board or in a box. In fact, success of a prototype is a lot more about the system surrounding the boards - the tools, design flow, and IP that make the whole thing come up easily and work smoothly. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton talks to Juergen Jaeger of Cadence about the new Protium Rapid Prototyping Platform from Cadence, and how it can simplify your prototyping process.

It’s Easy to Protect Your Embedded System from Theft

If you have invested years and millions of dollars in the design of an embedded system (and in the creation of the Intellectual Property, or IP, that goes along with the design) it can be of critical importance to protect that system from unauthorized duplication or theft. After all, it’s much easier to steal something as complex as a multi-million gate FPGA design than to create, debug, and test it. The protection of an embedded system that uses FPGAs, is particularly relevant since FPGAs have become the platforms of choice for innovation.

Accelerating Open Source Security Using OpenCL & Altera FPGAs

Today's FPGAs offer interesting potential for accelerating performance- and power-critical operations such as security algorithms. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Ryan Kenny of Altera about using FPGAs to accelerate open source security algorithms written in OpenCL.

New Approaches to Hardware Acceleration Using Ultra Low Density FPGAs

Ask system designers to list the problems they face – it doesn’t matter whether they’re building mobile consumer, automotive, industrial, medical or scientific applications – and inevitably they’ll mention optimizing host processor performance. It’s hardly surprising. The event-driven architecture of these MPUs allows them to multitask and address new priorities as they occur. But as the number of I/O continues to rise, it also places escalating demand on bandwidth. Tasked with managing a wider array of I/O as well as other system-wide command and control functions, today’s host MPUs must remain operational for longer periods of time, thereby consuming precious power and compute resources.

Verify Design Performance with PADS Best-in-Class Simulation and Analysis

It really isn't important to simulate your PCB design - as long as you don't care about re-spins, signal integrity, cost... OK, actually, there are many good reasons to simulate your board. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Jim Martens of Mentor Graphics about simulating your board design using PADS. It may make you re-think your board design strategy.

System Design with Advance FPGA Timing Models

Advanced FPGAs are difficult to characterized due to their advanced process nodes, which delays the availability of final timing models until silicon characterization is completed. This paper describes the timing models available for end-user FPGA design, in advance of production FPGAs. This paper explains the development cycle of FPGAs, along with the timing models available at each stage. This paper also describes the best practices that you can use at each stage of the timing model.

It's an Analog World After All

It's an analog world out there. And, while most microcontrollers offer terrific features in the digital and software domain, Microchip has a new family of MCUs with Intelligent Analog capabilities that can make a huge difference in connecting your design to the real world. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton talks to Alexis Alcott of Microchip about harnessing the power of Intelligent Analog in MCU design.

Selecting an Operating System (OS) for Embedded Application

It seems these days, just about every embedded system has some type of operating system. And there are more options today as to which OS to choose. Is open source your best choice? What about a free RTOS? In this paper, learn the pros and cons of the many OS options available today and how to select the right OS for your next embedded project.

Infineon's 8th Generation of RF Transistors Maximize Receiver Sensitivity and Range

If you're designing systems that use the latest WiFi standards, you know that a great RF transistor with high gain and low noise is key to good performance. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton talks with Andrew Nelson of Infineon about the latest in high-performance RF transistors - Infineon's new 8th generation.

Overcome the Challenges of Highly Constrained Designs

Many of today's high-performance board designs have complex timing constraints, and meeting all those constraints can be a significant design challenge. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Jim Martens of Mentor Graphics about advanced design techniques with PADS that will help get you to design closure faster and with fewer headaches on complex, highly-constrained boards.

100G Ethernet Packet Parsing with Spacetime

Designing 100G Ethernet is a daunting challenge. Timing, power, latency, and throughput all fight with each other, and it's easy to fall into a design trap with a solution that doesn't offer a good compromise. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Parsun Raha about the challenges of 100G (and beyond), and how those conflicting design goals can be met by Tabula's innovative Spacetime architecture.

Scripted Flows in Vivado Design Suite

When you're using a new tool for the first time, a good GUI is great to have, but once you're up and running and automating a complex design process, scripted flows offer a much more powerful means of controlling your tools. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton and Ron Plyler of Xilinx explore scripted flows in the Vivado design suite.

It's the Software, Silly! - Success with FPGA-based Prototyping

Software is becoming a larger and larger part of our system-on-chip (SoC) designs. It is critical that we be able to begin developing and debugging software as early as possible in the design cycle. But, the hardware part of today's complex designs takes months to stabilize. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton talks with Juergen Jaeger of Cadence about the tight relationship between software and emulation and how you can achieve success in your SoC design with a comprehensive emulation strategy.

Leveraging MIPI D-PHY-based Peripherals in Embedded Designs

Embedded systems designers face an ongoing dilemma. On the one hand they need to drive down systems costs. On the other they cannot exploit manufacturing economies of scale because their systems are targeted at relatively narrow, low volume applications. While high volume consumer markets offer components capable of performing similar tasks at much lower cost, embedded designers are restricted from taking advantage of those components by their systems’ reliance on highly specialized, legacy interfaces optimized for the embedded environment. This issue plays out most vividly in displays, cameras and application processors where low-cost, MIPI-compliant components for mobile platforms with interfaces based on the D-PHY physical bus cannot communicate with embedded system processors that typically feature LVDS, RGB or SPI interfaces for their display and digital parallel, subLVDS or HiSPi interfaces for an image sensor. This paper looks at potential solutions to this problem and explores how embedded systems designers can leverage the cost/performance advantages system developers in high volume consumer markets have already learned.

High Speed Converters: What? Why? (and a little How?)

As we move our analog-to-digital conversion closer to the beginning of our signal chain, the performance demands can get extreme. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with David Robertson - VP at Analog Devices about how to design high-speed converters for today's most demanding applications.

OpenCL on FPGAs for GPU Programmers

In this white paper, Acceleware introduces parallel programming targeting Altera® FPGAs using the OpenCL™ framework to graphics processing unit (GPU) programmers. This white paper provides a brief overview of OpenCL, discusses the Altera FPGA architecture and its benefits, and explains how OpenCL kernels are executed and optimized on FPGAs versus GPUs.

Static Timing Analysis and Constraint Validation

Before you can even think about timing closure in your FPGA design, you have to set up timing constraints. But, being sure that you have the right constraints can be a real challenge. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Ron Plyler of Xilinx about some powerful new ways to set up and validate timing constraints on your way to timing closure with Xilinx's Vivado tool suite.

Developing Clean Efficient Power with LLC Resonant Converters with Infineon

Ready to get your black belt in DC power conversion? In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Sam Abdel-Rahman of Infineon about how to make a versatile, high-efficiency, LLC resonant mode power converter. So, buckle up, hit play, and get your DC on!

chalk talks

Smartphone and Tablet Accessory Design

In this episode of Chalk TalkHD Amelia Dalton talks to David Flowers from Microchip about creating tablet and smartphone accessories - and how it just may be easier than you think...

Super Low Power MCUs: NanoWatt XLP Technology

In this episode of Chalk TalkHD Amelia chats with Jason Tollefson of Microchip Technology about a radical new line of microcontrollers from Microchip that combine amazing processing capability with almost unbelievably low power consumption.

OpenCL on FPGAs: Accelerating Performance and Design Productivity

FPGAs have amazing capabilities when it comes to accelerating performance-critical algorithms at a tiny fraction of the power it would require to run them in software. The marriage of FPGAs with conventional CPUs could provide a truly remarkable high-performance computing platform. However, the problem has always been how to program it. In this episode of Chalk TalkHD Amelia chats with Albert Chang of Altera about about how OpenCL can now be used to program FPGAs. OpenCL is already very popular for programming systems with graphics processors (GPUs). Now, Altera has enabled us to use this same language to program FPGA+CPU systems.

Introducing SmartFusion2 FPGAs

In this episode of Chalk TalkHD Amelia Dalton chats with Wendy Lockhart of Microsemi about Microsemi's biggest FPGA announcement this year - SmartFusion2. This new family can do things we never expected from Microsemi's non-volatile FPGAs. Watch this Chalk Talk to learn what it's all about.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES RFCMOS Solutions and Catena WiFi Solutions

In this episode of Chalk TalkHD Amelia Dalton chats with Fayyaz Singaporewala (GLOBALFOUNDRIES) and Mats Carlsson (Catena) about how to get that scary RF portion of your next design done in a snap.

Static Timing Analysis and Constraint Validation

Before you can even think about timing closure in your FPGA design, you have to set up timing constraints. But, being sure that you have the right constraints can be a real challenge. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Ron Plyler of Xilinx about some powerful new ways to set up and validate timing constraints on your way to timing closure with Xilinx's Vivado tool suite.

Xilinx Agile Mixed Signal

In this episode of Chalk TalkHD Amelia chats with Steve Logan (Xilinx ) and they're going to tell you all about Agile Mixed Signal, and how it can dramatically improve the capabilities of your next FPGA design.

Solving the 100Gbps Challenge with ABAX2

What do you do when plain-old FPGAs leave too much on the table to handle your next bandwidth challenge efficiently? In this episode of Chalk TalkHD Amelia chats with Christian Plante (Tabula) about Tabula's new ABAX2 devices - based on their innovative Spacetime architecture. ABAX2 is fabricated on the latest Intel 22nm Tri-Gate technology, and can give you an enormous advantage in your next 100G design.

latest papers and content

Design Control, Data and Comparision with PADS® Archive Management

15Gb/s HMC Interface for UltraScale Devices

Watch a demonstration of the industry's first 15Gb/s HMC interface by Xilinx and Pico Computing at the International Supercomputing Conference.

Xilinx and Open-Silicon HMC Memory Solution

Watch a demonstration of the industry's first available 12.5 Gb/s Hybrid Memory Cube (HMC) interface using the Xilinx Virtex®-7 FPGA. See how this solution provides superior memory bandwidth for your application using HMC technology, Virtex-7 FPGA, and Open-Silicon IP.

Leading Up to PCI Express 4.0

In this week's Whiteboard Wednesdays video, Moshik Rubin discusses the history of the PCI Express standard. Moshik starts with PCIe Gen1, which originated in 2002, and walks through the doubling of throughput offered by each new generation, ending with PCIe Gen4.

Selecting an Operating System (OS) for Embedded Application

It seems these days, just about every embedded system has some type of operating system. And there are more options today as to which OS to choose. Is open source your best choice? What about a free RTOS? In this paper, learn the pros and cons of the many OS options available today and how to select the right OS for your next embedded project.

Navigating the FDA Approval Process for Your Software Based Medical Device

Understand how to get your product to market within product launch schedules. Review challenges companies face as they seek FDA approval and review guidance and resources to assist with successfully navigating the approval process. Learn about a number of important areas including premarket submissions, documentation, verification and validation (V&V), user experience and human factors design, and cybersecurity.  Presented by Steve Robertson with Mentor Graphics Embedded Software.  

Protium Rapid Prototyping Platform

Building a robust prototype involves a lot more than just throwing a bunch of big FPGAs on a board or in a box. In fact, success of a prototype is a lot more about the system surrounding the boards - the tools, design flow, and IP that make the whole thing come up easily and work smoothly. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton talks to Juergen Jaeger of Cadence about the new Protium Rapid Prototyping Platform from Cadence, and how it can simplify your prototyping process.

Internet of Things (IoT) Design Considerations for Embedded Connected Devices

Embedded connectivity has been around since the early days of M2M. But what is new are the many complexities and emerging standards embedded system developers need to know if they are to design the latest IoT device. This paper delves into many of the key considerations developers need to know and discusses the critical areas of IoT security and connectivity along with the importance of a proven RTOS.

Developing Medical Device Software Confirming with IEC 62304 Standard

The IEC 62304 standard for medical device software complies with requirements in the European Union and the United States. Learn about this standard, how to manage risks and establish best practices in the software life cycle to support certification and audit to meet the requirements for IEC 62305.  Explore topics that include using software of unknown provenance (SOUP), mitigating risk throughout the life cycle, managing requirements, code quality standards and configuration management.

Static Timing Analysis and Constraint Validation

Before you can even think about timing closure in your FPGA design, you have to set up timing constraints. But, being sure that you have the right constraints can be a real challenge. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with Ron Plyler of Xilinx about some powerful new ways to set up and validate timing constraints on your way to timing closure with Xilinx's Vivado tool suite.

Xilinx at NAB 2014 | OmniTek Ultra 4K Tool Box

David Ackroyd, Business Development Director for OmniTek demonstrates an an Ultra 4K Tool Box that includes conversions from 4K to/from SD including quad 3G-SDI.

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OpenCL on FPGAs for GPU Programmers

In this white paper, Acceleware introduces parallel programming targeting Altera® FPGAs using the OpenCL™ framework to graphics processing unit (GPU) programmers. This white paper provides a brief overview of OpenCL, discusses the Altera FPGA architecture and its benefits, and explains how OpenCL kernels are executed and optimized on FPGAs versus GPUs.

Using Low Cost, Non-Volatile PLDs in System Applications

Power supply sequencing, voltage and current monitoring, bus bridging, voltage level translation, interface control, and temperature measurement are typical board functions found in system applications. By using a programmable-based approach instead of several discrete devices or Application Specific Standard Products (ASSPs), designers can accelerate their time-to-market, address system cost and space reduction, and ensure a high level of product differentiation.

Extending Transceiver Leadership at 28nm

As next-generation applications and systems continue driving up I/O bandwidth demands, transceivers are evolving to meet these requirements. The latest-generation transceivers deliver the highest data rates, at up to 28 Gbps, at the lowest power for applications such as 100 Gigabit Ethernet systems. In this 40-minute webcast, you'll get a close look at key transceiver capabilities in our 28-nm Stratix® V FPGAs.

Integrating High-Level Synthesis Designs into SoCs with Less Effort and Risk

High-Level Synthesis (HLS) has many benefits for integrated circuit design but also introduces challenges for integration into SoCs. This paper proposes solutions that improve HLS system integration by eliminating manual interface specification, reducing debug and allow system integration and verification tasks to be performed earlier. By enabling an HLS to SoC flow from a model-based design environment, these methods increase productivity and eliminate manual effort, errors and risk.

Intel Atom™ Processor with built-in Altera Arria® FPGA

In this Chalk TalkHD Amelia talks to David Schmidt of Arrow about the new Intel Atom™ processor with an Altera Arria FPGA built right into the package.

Xilinx and ARM Address New Markets

Ian Ferguson, VP of Segment Marketing at ARM, explains how an ARM processor combined with an FPGA addresses the embedded space. He also discusses three areas where programmable logic provides the most value along with the new markets addressed by the Zynq®-7000 All Programmable device.

FPGA Coprocessing Evolution: Sustained Performance Approaches Peak Performance

FPGA architecture allows for many algorithm implementations where the sustained performance is much closer to the device’s peak performance when compared to quad-core CPUs or GPGPUs. The strong benchmarking results from FPGA accelerators will continue to improve with appropriate focus on the silicon, arithmetic, and library foundations. As even the largest FPGAs currently consume less than 30W of power, FPGA roadmaps are well below datacenter power and cooling limitations.

LatticeECP3 Family

The LatticeECP3™ (EConomy Plus Third generation) family of FPGA devices is optimized to deliver high performance features such as an enhanced DSP architecture, high speed SERDES and high speed source synchronous interfaces in an economical FPGA fabric. This combination is achieved through advances in device architecture and the use of 65nm technology making the devices suitable for high-volume, high-speed, low-cost applications.

SmartFusion2 SoC FPGA PCIe Control Plane Demo User’s Guide

SmartFusion®2 SoC FPGA devices integrate a 4th gen flash-based FPGA fabric and an ARM® Cortex™-M3 processor, along with high performance communication interfaces on a single chip. The SmartFusion2 high speed serial interface (SERDESIF) provides a fully hardened PCIe endpoint (EP) implementation and is compliant with PCIe Base Specification Revision 2.0 and 1.1. For more details, refer to the SmartFusion2 SoC FPGA High Speed Serial Interfaces User’s Guide. The demo shows the SmartFusion2 embedded PCI Express feature binge used as a low bandwidth control plane interface using the SmartFusion2 Development Kit.

Leveraging Power Leadership at 28nm with Xilinx 7 Series FPGAs

In this new whitepaper, learn the most effective methods for minimizing FPGA power consumption with Xilinx's industry-leading power solutions. Real-world design examples showcasing Xilinx power estimation and optimization methods are discussed.

Building a New Type of IP Factory

Reliable IP blocks are essential to the success of most modern SoC and custom IC designs. But finding a reliable, reputable source of verified IP can be challenging. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton talks to Kevin Yee (Cadence Design Systems) about Cadence's substantial IP offerings

Overcoming Smart Grid Equipment Design Challenges with FPGAs

Smart grid systems offer the engineer significant design challenges as these systems must have longevity, from not only a reliability standpoint but also from the perspectives of performance and functionality. In addition, smart grid products require their designers to keep abreast of the latest standards and make provisions for inevitable upgrades and updates. The Altera® Cyclone® V FPGA and Cyclone® V SoC families provide engineers with technology—silicon, development tools, and intellectual property (IP)—that provide superior reliability, performance, time to market, maintainability, and cost.

Increasing Efficiency with Hard Memory Controllers in Low-Cost 28 nm FPGAs

With the hard memory controller (HMC) in Altera® Cyclone® V FPGAs, designers can maximize efficiency and flexibility, thereby achieving low power and low cost for their systems and applications. Check out the whitepaper to learn more.

Industry's First DDR4 Controller and Interface Running at 2400 Mb/s

This demonstration showcases a DDR4 memory interface running at and above 2400 Mb/s with the Kintex® UltraScale™ FPGA. The memory interface will demonstrate adequate operating margin while running under stressful conditions, ensuring robust operation in the presence of voltage, process or temperature variation.

Enable High-Performance DSP with Variable-Precision DSP Blocks

DSP designs use hundreds or thousands of multipliers as basic building blocks to implement filters, fast Fourier transforms (FFTs), and encoders that digitally process signals. This document highlights the benefits of variable-precision DSP architecture in Altera’s new Arria® V and Cyclone® V FPGAs. Altera's variable precision DSP block allows designers to tailor the precision on a block-by-block basis, thereby saving resources and power while increasing performance.

SmartFusion2 SoC FPGA In-System Programming Using UART Interface Demo Guide

In-System Programming (ISP) can be used to reprogram design iterations and field upgrades. SmartFusion®2 SoC FPGA devices support ISP using the Universal Asynchronous Receiver/Transmitter (UART) interface. This document describes how to program the following, using ISP through the UART interface: • embedded Non-volatile Memory (eNVM) • FPGA Fabric • both the eNVM and the FPGA Fabric For more information on programming SmartFusion2 SoC FPGAs, see the SmartFusion2 Programming User's Guide. For information on system controller programming services, see the SmartFusion2 System Controller User's Guide.

Implementing FIR Filters and FFTs with 28nm Variable-Precision DSP Architecture

Across applications, the two most common functions implemented in FPGA-based high-performance signal processing are FIR filters and FFTs. The FPGA’s DSP architecture must be optimized to allow the most efficient implementation of these structures as this directly translates into cost and power benefits to the customer. This paper introduces the DSP architecture of the latest 28nm Altera® FPGAs and shows how this architecture enables the most efficient implementation of FIR filters and FFTs.

Low-Cost Implementation of High-Performance PCIe Gen2 Hard IP

PCI Express® (PCIe®) Gen2 performance is no longer a “high-end” (read expensive) standard to support. With the certification of the Altera® Cyclone® V FPGA family, PCIe Gen2x4, design engineers now have a low cost alternative for their PCIe Gen2 applications.


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