Microsemi and Imperas Announce Extendable Platform Kit for Microsemi Mi-V RISC-V Soft CPUs

Microsemi Corporation

Collaboration Enabled by Microsemis Mi-V Ecosystem, Designed to Drive Adoption of FPGA-Based RISC-V Designs

Microsemi Corporation (Nasdaq: MSCC), a leading provider of semiconductor solutions differentiated by power, security, reliability and performance, and Imperas Software Ltd., the leader in high-performance software simulation and virtual platforms, today announced the Extendable Platform Kit™ for Microsemi Mi-V™ RISC-V soft central processing units (CPUs). The collaboration delivers the first commercially available instruction set simulator (ISS) for Microsemis Mi-V ecosystem, a program designed to increase adoption of Microsemis RISC-V soft CPU product family utilizing RISC-V open instruction set architectures (ISAs).

To read the Microsemi press release, click here.

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Inflection point for RISC-V. The 7th RISC-V workshop in Silicon Valley

Embedded Computing Design

Inflection point for RISC-V: The 7th RISC-V workshop in Silicon Valley

Imperas participated in the 7th RISC-V workshop in Milpitas, California, with a talk and demonstrations. 

Imperas at 7th RISC-V workshop

Each workshop has a different feel to it, and this one seems to be the inflection point in RISC-V maturity. Whereas past workshops felt a bit like a revival tent meeting, with most everyone caught up in the religion of RISC-V, at this workshop there was also a strong…

To read the article in Embedded Computing Design, click here.

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How To Handle Concurrency

Semiconductor Engineering

How To Handle Concurrency.

The recent article in Semiconductor Engineering by Brian Bailey on Handling Concurrency, includes discussion from Simon Davidmann of Imperas.

System complexity is skyrocketing. The evolution of processing architectures has solved many problems within a chip, but for each problem solved another one was created. Concurrency is one of those issues, and it has been getting much more attention lately.

To read the article, click here.

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Accelerating OS Bring-up And Software Debug across the Spectrum of Electronics Systems

Embedded Systems Engineering EECatalog

As software complexity is increasing exponentially, companies must adopt better ways to address problems, as eventually the existing methods will no longer be sufficient. And, one serious failure changes everything for your business and your career. One lesson to be learned from SoC design and verification:  A structured methodology makes execution predictable and reduces risk, benefits that argue for a more formalized approach within the embedded software development domain.

In the October issue of Embedded Systems Engineering, Imperas CEO, Simon Davidmann discusses the issues in porting operating systems to new SoC and hardware platforms and uses the case study of porting Linux to an Altera platform.

To read the article, click here.

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Five Minutes With… Embedded Computing Design. Larry Lapides

Five Minutes With… Larry Lapides, vice president, Imperas

The best CPU architecture in the world will not do you much good if the ecosystem falls flat.

RISC-V, the new kid on the block when it comes to instruction-set architectures (ISAs), is up against that stumbling block right now – it needs tools to not just survive, but to thrive.

In this weeks Five Minutes with…discussion, Rich Nass of Embedded Computing Design and Larry Lapides, VP of Imperas talked about the present and future of the RISC-V ecosystem  … click here to read more and listen to the audio interview.

Click here to go directly to the interview on YouTube.

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Heterogeneous System Challenges Grow

Semiconductor Engineering

How to make sure different kinds of processors will work in an SoC.

Ann Steffora Mutschler of Semiconductor Engineering has written an article on the challenges of heterogenous systems.

As more types of processors are added into SoCs—CPUs, GPUs, DSPs and accelerators, each running a different OS—there is a growing challenge to make sure these compute elements interact properly with their neighbors.

Adding to the problem is this mix of processors and accelerators varies widely between different markets and applications. In mobile there are CPUs, GPUs, video and crypto processors. In automotive, there may be additional vision processing accelerators. In networking and servers there are various packet processing and cryptography accelerators. Server applications traditionally have relied on general-purpose CPU, but the future brings more dedicated acceleration engines, which may be customized for specific applications and may be implemented using FPGAs.

While heterogeneous processing has been in use for some time, it is getting more complex. In 1989, Intel rolled out the 80487 math co-processor for its 80486 CPU. And in 2011, ARM introduced its power-saving heterogeneous big.LITTLE architecture. In between and since then, there has been a growing mix of CPUs and GPUs and many other types of accelerators.

“It’s common, for example, to offload common tasks to a dedicated hardware accelerator, for video compression, cryptographic acceleration and the like,” said …

To read the article, click here.

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Hypervisors. Help Or Hindrance

Almost everything is a tradeoff and tipping the scales is usually influenced by the end product goals. Hypervisors have a few such parameters.

Brian Bailey is Technology Editor/EDA for Semiconductor Engineering and has written an interesting article related to Hypervisors.

Hypervisors are seeing an increased level of adoption, but do they help or hinder the development and verification process? The answer may depend on your perspective.

In the hardware world, system-level integration is rapidly becoming a roadblock in the development process. While each of the pieces may be known to work separately, as soon as they are put together, the interactions between them can create a number of problems. The industry is working to come up with some tools and methodologies that constrain this problem.

In the software world, they are taking a different approach. They are using a hypervisor to create well-defined interfaces between the individual software blocks, ensuring that one cannot disturb another. This enables applications to be built that are more robust, provide a significant increase in security, allow for staged development and enables the controlled intermixing of attributes of a real time environment, with a more flexible operating system environment such as Linux.

But this problem is multi-faceted, and what helps in one area can cause problems for another. Balancing all of them may depend on what you are attempting to create and the value you place on certain attributes of the development process. “Safety critical applications are becoming increasingly competitive, and there is always a push for more functionality in these systems,” says…

To read the article, click here.

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Rethinking Verification For Cars

Semiconductor Engineering

First of two parts: How the car industry can improve reliability.

Ann Steffora Mutschler of Semiconductor Engineering has written an article on how to improve reliability in automotive.

As the amount of electronic content in a car increases, so does the number of questions about how to improve reliability of those systems.

Unlike an IoT device, which is expected last a couple of years, automotive electronics fall into a class of safety-critical devices. There are standards for verifying these devices, new test methodologies, and there is far more scrutiny about how all of this happens.

“We are moving from ADAS to autopilot, from autopilot to autonomous driving,” said…

To read the article, click here.

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