The folks at Xilinx have just announced three new industrial Targeted Design Platforms at the SPS/IPC/DRIVES 2010 conference in Nuremberg, Germany.
Based on the low-cost Spartan-6 FPGA family, these platforms will help engineers increase performance and reduce time to market for PROFINET real time networking, advanced motor control, and GigE Vision industrial imaging applications.
At the heart of the three new platforms, the Spartan-6 FPGA provides the flexible interfaces and parallel processing performance needed to manage advanced and legacy communication protocols, execute complex high-bandwidth motor-control algorithms, or handle gigabit-speed video. Xilinx's Targeted Design Platforms and comprehensive design ecosystem assemble the development boards, kits, IP cores, tools, and silicon that enable designers to leapfrog past the design basics to focus on adding unique value.
PROFINET Targeted Design Platform: Comprised of programmable hardware, third-party software from alliance partner Softing, and a complete reference design, this platform reduces the time and resources needed for OEMs and engineers to produce fully functioning designs. The included daughter card supports multiple real-time industrial Ethernet protocols and legacy serial connectivity, as well as Xilinx ISE Design Suite: Embedded Edition.
Targeted Design Platform for motor control: Combining the Spartan-6 SP605 Evaluation Kit with the NetMot FMC board, IP from QDeSys, and industrial networking IP from Bosch and Beckhoff, this platform provides all the building blocks needed to begin prototyping an intelligent drive control system. Moreover, development can begin immediately, eliminating the time traditionally needed to bring up prototype hardware. The Spartan-6 FPGA is able to host dedicated networking and motor control IP blocks operating alongside a MicroBlaze processor running application-specific software. MicroBlaze is a 32-bit customisable processor that can be implemented fully in the FPGA fabric using Xilinx soft IP. Customers starting with this platform can integrate multiple control and communication functions on a single FPGA board, while retaining the flexibility to enhance performance and connectivity as future system demands evolve.
GigE Vision Targeted Design Platform: This platform helps designers apply the GigE Vision standard for high-speed video transport in machine vision applications. GigE Vision combines Gigabit Ethernet transport with enhancements delivering robust packet handling and real-time performance. The demonstration at the Xilinx booth will highlight supporting IP developed by Sensor-Image, enabling customers to complete their solutions quickly.
Through its selection of Targeted Design Platforms, hardware, and software IP developed in conjunction with Xilinx Alliance Members specializing in industrial control and networking, Xilinx empowers its customers to deliver competitively priced SoC solutions delivering a performance edge over alternatives in the marketplace. A rich selection of solutions is available, supporting the major standards and protocols used in the industrial space. Click Here for further information.
Availability PROFINET Targeted Design Platform, Targeted Design Platform for motor control, and GigE Vision Targeted Design Platform are available now.
Thanks for the comment. We do in fact provide the targeted reference designs online for customers to download and evaluate, along with the tools, IP, and instructions. Each of the targeted reference designs has been designed to work on a specific board and FPGA device. Currently, customers would need one of these board or would need to design a board based on design files including board layout provided in downloadable material to evaluate the functionality running in hardware. The IP that is included in the each of the kits is either full versions or evaluation versions that timeout. Xilinx targeted design platforms include OS, IP, and drivers that come from Xilinx as well as third party providers. For these kits Xilinx provides support for customers.
- Xilinx PR guy
Targeted design platforms are a good idea. Perhaps these hardware platforms can be put online so an interested engineer can try them out before purchasing them.
One concern I have is the amount of IP that needs to be purchased to support the design and the number of 3rd parties involved. If the OS, some key IP and drivers all come from different companies support can be a real issue.
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