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A milestone in the making: 1 billion Spartan family devices sold

26th October 2020
Lanna Cooper

We’ve achieved a monumental milestone in the company’s history with over one billion Spartan family devices sold to date! No other FPGA family in our portfolio has reached this significant milestone. The flagship of our cost optimised portfolio, Spartan family devices are an industry staple with each generation delivering new and cutting-edge capabilities for industrial, consumer, and automotive applications including any-to-any connectivity, sensor fusion, and embedded vision.

Guest blog post written by Xilinx

We’re immensely proud that our Spartan family continues to have such strong demand in the marketplace.

The first Spartan device was unveiled in 1998. Over the years, we’ve advanced every new generation of Spartan devices to provide solutions and adaptable technology to address industry needs.

Key historical technological improvements include significant increases in logic density, performance, I/O bandwidth, and local memory. The first Spartan device maxed out at 1,862 logic cells (LCs), whereas the current generation, which includes Artix-7 and Spartan-7, have over 215,000 LCs.

For performance, the original Spartan had clock speeds around 80MHz, and today’s Spartan devices deliver over 600MHz. The I/O bandwidth capability has also dramatically increased from two gigabits/second to nearly three terabits/second. The internal memory in Spartan devices started out at 25 kilobits, and with the latest generation it has increased to 13 megabits.

Additionally, the newest 28nm Spartan devices were developed with high performance state-of-the-art capabilities including Digital Signal Processing (DSP), mixed-signal capability, and security. The initial device didn’t have a DSP feature, while the current Spartan devices can reach over 5.3TMAC/s (tera multiply accumulates per second).

Spartan FPGAs also evolved from being purely digital, to mix analog and digital logic, enabling dual 16-bit 1MSample/second ADCs. Security features have also improved over the years, moving from bitstream encryption to 256-bit AES encryption with HMAC/SHA-256 authentication, as well as the addition of built-in SEU (single event upset) detection and correction.

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