PARIS – Atmel Corp. and the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits (ISS) in Germany have joined forces to develop systems-on-chip (SoCs) based on Atmel's AT91CAP ARM-based customizable microcontroller for their mutual customers.
Under the terms of the agreement, Fraunhofer ISS will provide complementary design support. In more practical terms, the Erlangen-based institute said it would work together with clients to transform their design specifications into netlists for the metal programmable portion of the AT91CAP customizable microcontroller, complementing IP blocks from Atmel’s extensive libraries with IP from Fraunhofer IIS as required.
Fraunhofer added that the netlists would be validated on the AT91CAP emulation board by mapping them onto the built-in FPGA before being transferred to Atmel for metal programming of the AT91CAP platform. The customer and Fraunhofer IIS, prior to customer signoff for fabrication, will perform post-layout simulation.
“Atmel’s CAP architecture is very interesting due its FPGA based verification approach," commented Norbert Schuhmann, Group Manager Design Services at Fraunhofer IIS. "This allows early software development with system validation in hardware and reduces the overall design risk. The customizable part of CAP gives a lot of flexibility to extend the functionality of the predefined ARM core by adding logic and memories, e.g. for coprocessor structures, as well as optional interfaces. Another positive aspect is the short turnaround time and the attractive price.”