SAN FRANCISCO—Design software vendor Altium Ltd. will provide its Altium Designer software as an option to customers using SmartFusion intelligent mixed-signal FPGAs from Microsemi Corp.'s SoC Products Group (formerly Actel Corp.), the companies said Wednesday (Nov. 10).
Altium said Altium Designer was selected as a design solution partner for SmartFusion because of its ability to address system design by combining PCB, embedded software development and FPGA design in one unified system. SmartFusion devices integrate an FPGA, a hard ARM Cortex-M3-based microcontroller subsystem and programmable analog on a single chip.
Altium’s SmartFusion support makes full use of its unified design platform, which lets designers work across all design domains—hardware, software and programmable hardware—with one solution, according to Microsemi. SmartFusion device support will be included in the standard design flow, making it accessible to any Altium Designer customer, the companies said.
"Adding SmartFusion device support to Altium Designer provides a quick and easy way for our customers to harness the power of these highly innovative new devices," said Nick Martin, Altium CEO, in a statement. "The combination of FPGA fabric, programmable analog support and an embedded ARM processor provides an exceptional platform for implementation of design ideas."
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.