Electronic Design

Reconfigurable, Extendible DSP Cores Target Wireless Handsets, Speech Processing

At last month's Embedded Systems Conference in San Francisco, Belgian startup Adelante Technologies disclosed its Galaxic DSP technology for wireless handset, digital control, and speech processing subsystems. The 0.18-µm CMOS Galaxic technology includes several reconfigurable and extendible DSP cores, core-acceleration IP, and comprehensive development tools.

Adelante has also crafted a configurable DSP subsystem architecture, Lunar, for multiprocessor SoCs. Lunar includes all configurable program and data memory, direct memory access, optional built-in self-test, JTAG debug, and interfaces to external processors, peripherals, I/O, and memory.

Galaxic cores are open and foundry independent. The first device is the register-transfer level, 16-bit, reconfigurable, extendible DSP core, Saturn (see the figure). With a parallel dual Harvard architecture, it executes 420 million MACs/s at a 210-MHz clock. It consumes only 0.25 mW/MHz and occupies just 0.5 mm2 of silicon. Its 16- and 32-bit instructions are optimized for execution of wireless, speech, and digital functions. A 256-point fast Fourier transform (FFT) can be executed in 3100 clock cycles.

The core's 16-bit instruction set can be expanded to add 256 application-specific 96-bit very-long-instruction-word instructions that exploit the core's resources in parallel. The internal core hardware can be expanded with application-specific execution units (AXUs) to accelerate repetitive or compute-intensive signal-processing tasks like Viterbi butterflies or FFTs. The AXUs typically add 1000 or fewer gates to the core, keeping costs low.

As part of its subsystem strategy, Adelante also provides application-specific coprocessors that can be tightly linked to the core in the Lunar DSP subsystem. Typically, coprocessors add 500 to 50,000 gates to the design. Adelante offers six coprocessors that can be used with Saturn or any other Galaxic core.

Galaxic DSP cores and subsystems are supported by the Atmosphere Development Environment tools.

Visit www.adelantetech.com for additional details.

TAGS: Digital ICs
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