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Microsemi Announces System Builder Design Tool for ARM-based SmartFusion2 SoC FPGA Designs
Libero SoC Software with System Builder Design Tool Accelerates SmartFusion2 Adoption and Customers' Time-to-market
"The System Builder tool significantly simplifies the design process for Microsemi's SmartFusion2 SoC FPGAs in embedded system applications," said Jim Davis, vice president of software and systems engineering at Microsemi. "As these devices have grown in complexity the architecture specification stage of the design has become increasingly error-prone. With System Builder the designer can quickly and easily define the desired system architecture via a high-level step-by-step process."
The output from System Builder is automatically generated and correct-by-construction, thus eliminating the errors that are created when the architecture is specified 'by hand' as in more traditional tool flows. Thus, System Builder dramatically shortens the design cycle time for complex SoC FPGAs.
Additionally, software-oriented engineers can easily create an embedded architecture and begin code development all on their own. This simplifies the adoption of Microsemi SmartFusion2 devices and provides a much broader set of design engineers with access to SoC FPGA technology. The enhanced System Builder flow also enables Microsemi to easily support more customers with its internal design services team that offers digital or mixed signal design for custom functional blocks, Soft IP, firmware development and even complete designs to end customers.
System Builder users are guided step-by-step through each of the main SoC FPGA architecture blocks. The design process uses a high-level graphical interface that reacts to previous architecture selections and guides the user through the process of selecting options and configuring only the required embedded system blocks. The resulting system specification is automatically generated and correct-by-construction. It includes both the configuration and interconnects of the ARM processor and its related peripherals as well as other IP blocks implemented in the FPGA fabric. System Builder can also configure a growing set of IP blocks for high-performance interfaces including DDR2/DDR3/LPDDR memory controllers, and serial interfaces using 5Gbps SERDES for PCIe, XAUI (10 GbE) and SGMII. Additional fabric-based parameterized IP functions available within System Builder include I2C, SPI, Timers, UARTs and PWM blocks. This wealth of proven IP functions can be quickly and easily used to create application-specific SoCs, reducing time-to-market for the full range of industrial, communications, aviation and defense systems.
About SmartFusion2 SoC FPGAs
Microsemi's SmartFusion2 SoC FPGAs are designed to address fundamental requirements for advanced security, high reliability and low power in critical communications, industrial, defense, aviation and medical applications. SmartFusion2 integrates inherently reliable flash-based FPGA fabric, a 166 megahertz (MHz) ARM Cortex-M3 processor, advanced security processing accelerators, DSP blocks, SRAM, eNVM and industry-required high performance communication interfaces, all on a single chip.
About Libero SoC Design Environment
Libero SoC integrates industry leading synthesis, debug and DSP support from Synopsys, and simulation from Mentor Graphics with power analysis, timing analysis and push button design flow. Firmware development is fully integrated into Libero SoC with compile and debug available from GNU, IAR and Keil, and all device drivers and peripheral initialization are automatically generated based on System Builder selections. The ARM Cortex-M3 processor includes operating system support for embedded Linux from EmCraft Systems, FreeRTOS, SAFERTOS and uc/OS-III from Micrium.
Pricing and Availability
Libero SoC is available on Windows and Linux platforms. Libero Gold free license supports the majority of the SmartFusion2 family and obfuscated IP cores, and Libero Platinum license provides access to the highest density devices and RTL IP core libraries. For further information about pricing and availability, please contact Microsemi.
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