Embedded FPGA Technology Enlisted To Design Deep Learning SoCs

Flex Logix Technologies’ embedded FPGA will be integrated into a next-generation deep learning chip in TSMC 16FFC that is being developed by the research group of Professors David Brooks and Gu-Yeon Wei at Harvard's John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Flex Logix and the Harvard researchers have already completed the chip design and tape-out and are now going into fabrication, highlighting the ease-of-use and stability of using the Flex Logix embedded FPGA platform.


The Harvard researchers join other Flex Logix customers such as DARPA who have chosen the EFLX platform to design their next generation chips, ICs, and SoCs. These organizations recognize that the ability to update critical RTL enables chips to evolve as needed for fast changing algorithms and standards. Embedded FPGA eliminates these potential setbacks by providing engineers the flexibility to update or change RTL at any time after fabrication, even in-system.

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About the EFLX Embedded FPGA IP Cores


Flex Logix provides an EFLX-2.5K Logic IP core and EFLX-2.5K DSP IP core which are the building blocks for almost 50 different sized arrays. These can mix and match the logic and DSP cores to meet the needs of a wide range of applications. The EFLX-2.5K Logic IP core has 2520 LUTs, 632 inputs and 632 output and is a complete embedded FPGA. The EFLX-2.5K core can be tiled to make larger arrays as required. The EFLX-2.5K DSP core is interchangeable in EFLX arrays with the Logic IP core: the EFLX-2.5K DSP core has 40 MACs (pre-adder, 22-bit multiplier and 48-bit accumulator) which are pipelineable; the number of LUTs is 1880.


The TSMC 16FFC/FF+ implementation offers multiple enhancements: 6-input LUTs for more logic and fewer stages leading to faster clock rates; an enhanced interconnect for more performance especially for large arrays; multiple DFT features for increased fault coverage, faster test time and increased reliability.


EFLX is available in two core sizes (-100 and -2.5K) today on multiple mainstream foundry processes: TSMC40ULP, TSMC28HPM/HPC and TSMC16FF+/FFC. EFLX can also be ported to any proprietary CMOS process for organizations with their own fabs.


EFLX is a digital architecture for development of embedded FPGAs for integration into SoCs, ASICs and MCUs of a wide range of sizes. The EFLX arrays are programmed using VHDL or Verilog; the EFLX compiler takes the output of a synthesis tool such as Synopsys Synplify and does packing, placement, routing, timing and bitstream generation. The bitstream when loaded into the array programs it to execute the desired RTL.


More information can be obtained at http://www.flex-logix.com


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