FPGA emulation engines offer speedier route to finalise programmable designs

August 08, 2013 // By Julien Happich
Aspen's BEEcube FPGA emulation engines come in two versions, both with real hardware reconfigurable platforms.

They provide a single fully equipped, chassis mounted system that offers the fastest, easiest and most reliable path from algorithm to working implementation in real time, the most efficient and cost effective method of getting your FPGA design to market as a fully tested design. The MiniBEE “Research in a Box” features a single Xilinx Vertex 6 FPGA and is aimed at those doing research and development using FPGA technology. Those in education can benefit from Educational Support packages via the BEEcube Academic Program.

The BEE4-W offers real time, real hardware, full speed FPGA prototyping and features four Xilinx Vertex 6 FPGAs and has a maximum capacity of 20million ASIC gates.

Both of these BEEcube products come with integrated PCs; DDR3 on-board RAM; a wide range of I/Os including high speed analogue and/or digital FMC modules; PCIe and Gigabit Ethernet all packaged in a single 2U rack mountable assembly.

To enhance the performance of BEEcube FPGA emulation engines a new software tool, the BEEcube Platform Studio (BPS), works in tight integration with Matlab Simulink plus Xilinx development software. BPS accelerates the implementation of complex algorithms and automatically generates all platform specific hardware interface and corresponding drivers.

For designers who focus only on DSP development (for example, commencing from MATLAB) BPS can hide all FPGA design details - such as high-speed I/O configuration, timing closure for multiple clock domains, HW/SW interfaces, and IP integration. All connections outside the core algorithm are mapped through IP modules accessible directly in the BPS GUI.

In addition, a range of 9 VITA-57 FMC-HPC form-factor mixed signal interface cards are available including MIMO capable, ADC and DAC cards for Wireless Communications, Radio and Radar applications.

Aspen;  www.aspen-electronics.com