Arrow/Microsemi’s SF2+ development kit hosts Smartfusion2 FPGA

January 06, 2016 // By Graham Prophet
Arrow Electronics and Microsemi Corporation have disclosed an addition to Arrow’s development tools: the Arrow-built SF2+ Development Kit, that hosts Microsemi’s SmartFusion2 system-on-a-chip (SoC) field-programmable gate array (FPGA), Microsemi’s Timberwolf audio processor and Microsemi’s LX series power devices.

The SF2+ Development Kit is suitable, the companies say, for both software and hardware engineers looking to jumpstart next-level integrated designs.

“The SF2+ is a full-feature hardware development kit that enables software and hardware engineers to reduce not only the area of their board, but also the cost and complexity of working with multiple sensors and interfaces,” said Chakib Loucif, vice president of engineering at Arrow Electronics.

Arrow collaborated with Microsemi to design and build the SF2+. Microsemi’s SmartFusion2 SoC FPGAs can implement functions such as PCIe Gen2 control plane, image processing, I/O expansion and bridging. They also address fundamental requirements for advanced security, high reliability and low power in industrial, military, aviation, communications and medical applications. SmartFusion2 devices integrate an inherently reliable flash-based FPGA fabric, a 166 MHz ARM Cortex-M3 processor, security processing accelerators, DSP blocks, SRAM, eNVM and industry-required high performance serial communication interfaces—all on a single chip.

The Microsemi Timberwolf audio processor suits low-power, hands-free communications in security camera, communications and connected home applications. The field upgradable firmware enables far field microphone, beam forming, sound location estimation, acoustic echo cancellation (AEC), noise reduction and a variety of other voice enhancements to deliver clear voice quality in harsh environments.

LX7186A, an efficient switching regulator, and its LX8213, a low-power, fast-responding LDO, provide the SF2+ Development Kit with all of the power necessary for a variety of applications.

The SF2+ Development Kit also features Emcraft Systems’ SmartFusion2 system-on-module (SOM), along with Micron memory and Samtec connectors to help evaluate Microsemi’s Timberwolf audio processor and an array of Adruino compatible shields.