nSilica provides a substantial catalogue of configurable embedded processor cores and communications IP,” said Daniel Platzker, Product Line Director for FPGA synthesis at Mentor Graphics. “By validating its IP for use with Precision, EnSilica broadens the Precise-IP catalogue of advanced partner cores, allowing our mutual customers to benefit from Mentor Graphics’ comprehensive, vendor-independent FPGA design flow.”
EnSilica's eSi-RISC is a family of highly configurable and low-power soft processor cores for embedded systems that scales across a wide range of applications. It is unique in being the only processor architecture scalable from 16 bits to 32 bits, and encompassing optional DSP extensions, floating point and custom instructions. Furthermore, the memory architecture can be configured for Harvard or Von Neumann, or to include data and program caches. Using a mix of 16-bit and 32-bit instructions, it gives exceptional code density, reducing the program code size by up to 40% compared to leading FPGA vendor processors such as NIOSII and MicroBlaze while the minimum configuration can be implemented in as little as 8K gates, providing class leading overall silicon area and very low power. System clock speeds of over 200MHz can be achieved in Altera Stratix IV and Xilinx Virtex-6 FPGAs and all processors use the industry standard AMBA APB and AXI buses. EnSilica also has a library of APB-based peripherals, including UART, SPI, I2C, Timers and a 10/100 Ethernet MAC.
EnSilica’s eSi-Comms library of highly parameterised communications IP is suitable for many of the current air interface standards including WLAN, WiMAX, DVB and DAB.
Precise-IP is Mentor Graphics’ vendor-independent FPGA IP platform. It is part of the Precision Synthesis product family that includes RTL, physical and rad-tolerant synthesis tools. Precision Synthesis is the centre-piece of the industry's most comprehensive vendor-independent solution for FPGA design. The tool uses the same design source and constraints to target all major device vendors, enabling designers to synthesize eSi-RISC processors and eSi-Comms IP for optimal performance on any FPGA technology.
“Our eSi-RISC embedded processor cores and eSi-Comms IP library will give Mentor Graphics’ Precision Synthesis users an additional, distinctive edge to their FPGA designs,” said Ian Lankshear, Managing Director of EnSilica. “Silicon-proven, eSi-RISC’s single architecture is scalable over a range of embedded applications enabling companies to secure their software investment while addressing a wide range of needs. A high level of configurability enables hardware resources to be optimised to application requirements, minimising area and power to a level not possible with a general purpose processor architecture. The highly pipelined nature of the design gives customers a solution that can be easily migrated between FPGA types or even to ASIC technologies.”