Lowest Cost Entry Development Board With RISC-V Soft CPU Expands Microsemi Market Opportunities for its Low Power, Cost-Optimized Mid-Range FPGAs
ALISO VIEJO, Calif., Jan. 9, 2018 -- Microsemi Corporation (Nasdaq: MSCC), a leading provider of semiconductor solutions differentiated by power, security, reliability and performance, and Future Electronics, a global leading distributor of electronic components, today announced the availability of the Avalanche board featuring a Microsemi PolarFire® non-volatile field programmable gate array (FPGA). As the lowest cost entry development board available today for designing with Microsemi's lowest power, cost-optimized mid-range PolarFire FPGAs, Future's Avalanche board lowers the barrier to entry for PolarFire FPGAs and helps expand Microsemi's market opportunities for the device.
The Avalanche development board includes a RISC-V-based soft central processing unit (CPU) pre-programmed to the kit, offering a RISC-V-based board for low cost broad market applications utilizing RISC-V open instruction set architectures (ISAs) at mid-range densities. This supports the ongoing expansion of Microsemi's recently announced Mi-V™ ecosystem, which brings together industry leaders involved in the development of RISC-V to leverage their capabilities and streamline RISC-V designs for customers.
"The availability of Future Electronics' Avalanche board delivers customers the best value for a mid-range density FPGA development board featuring our PolarFire FPGAs," said Ted Marena, director of FPGA marketing for Microsemi. "With 300K logic elements (LEs), a Wi-Fi module, 1000 Base-T and numerous expansion connectors, engineers can quickly prototype their ideas at minimal cost. Future Electronics has not only lowered the cost to adopt PolarFire FPGAs, but it is also enabling customers to develop solutions leveraging the power of Microsemi's Mi-V ecosystem and the open RISC-V ISA."
Future Electronics' Avalanche development board also features serial flash memory, double data rate type three (DDR3) DRAM and a Microsemi VSC8531 triple speed PHY powered by Microsemi's LX7167 2.4A hysteretic step-down regulator, making the platform ideal for developing several applications within the industrial market, including industrial internet of things (IoT), secured wired communications, Gb Ethernet bridging and imaging. It also offers industry-standard connectors Arduino Shield, mikroBUS and a Peripheral Module (Pmod) interface. These three expansion headers allow for the use of additional boards to implement an expanded set of applications including infrared, thermal imaging, industrial cameras, touch screen and other wireless interfaces.
"As the newest addition to our family of development boards, the Avalanche board offers the lowest cost platform available in the market for Microsemi's innovative PolarFire technology," said Martin Bernier, director of the Engineering Support Group for Future Electronics. "We believe industrial, medical, defense and communication customers will be excited about PolarFire FPGA's ability to deliver up to 50 percent lower power than other mid-range density devices."
The increasing cost of manufacturing applications with specific input/outputs (I/Os) and interfaces means producing application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs) and processors optimized for every device scenario is becoming unsustainable. This is especially true as both IoT and artificial intelligence (AI) drive interconnect and networking complexity. In many markets, especially wired communications, industrial and automotive, FPGAs and other configurable logic solutions are increasingly relied on to fill the gap—solving throughput, security and interface challenges, while their flexibility drives down overall cost associated with supporting product line diversity. Because of this, Tom Hackenberg, embedded processors principal analyst at IHS Markit, predicts strong renewed FPGA growth in these markets with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) ranging from just under 6 percent to over 10 percent from 2016 to 2021.
Microsemi's PolarFire FPGA devices provide cost-effective bandwidth processing capabilities with the lowest power footprint. They feature 12.7 Gbps transceivers and offer up to 50 percent lower power than competing mid-range FPGAs, and include hardened PCIe controller cores with both endpoints and root port modes available, as well as low power transceivers. The company's PolarFire Evaluation Kit is a comprehensive alternative platform for evaluating its PolarFire FPGAs which includes a PCIe edge connector with four lanes and a demonstration design. The kit features a high-pin-count (HPC) FPGA mezzanine card (FMC), a single full-duplex lane of surface mount assemblies (SMAs), PCIe x4 fingers, dual Gigabit Ethernet RJ45 and a small form-factor pluggable (SFP) module.
Avalanche Seminar Series
Future Electronics will be hosting a series of seminars throughout the U.S. beginning in January and running for several months to introduce the Avalanche development platform to the design community. Attendees of the workshops will explore the Microsemi Libero™ system-on-chip (SoC) PolarFire version 2.0 tool flow, explore its debug capabilities and sample a few advanced features. For more information, visit https://futureelec.wufoo.com/forms/microsemi-avalanche-seminar-series/.
The Avalanche board for PolarFire, part number AVMPF300TS-01, is available now from Future Electronics. For more information, visit http://www.futureelectronics.com/en/Technologies/Product.aspx?ProductID=AVMPF300TS01FUTUREELECTRONICSDEVTOOLS4091879&IM=0.
About PolarFire FPGAs
Microsemi's new cost-optimized PolarFire FPGAs deliver the industry's lowest power at mid-range densities with exceptional security and reliability. The product family features 12.7 Gbps transceivers and offer up to 50 percent lower power than competing FPGAs. Densities span from 100K to 500K logic elements (LEs) and are ideal for a wide range of applications within wireline access networks and cellular infrastructure, defense and commercial aviation markets, as well as industry 4.0 which includes the industrial automation and internet of things (IoT) markets.
PolarFire FPGAs' transceivers can support multiple serial protocols, making the products ideal for communications applications with 10Gbps Ethernet, CPRI, JESD204B, Interlaken and PCIe. In addition, the ability to implement serial gigabit Ethernet (SGMII) on GPIO enables numerous 1Gbps Ethernet links to be supported. PolarFire FPGAs also contain the most hardened security intellectual property (IP) to protect customer designs, data and supply chain. The non-volatile PolarFire product family consumes 10 times less static power than competitive devices and features an even lower standby power referred to as Flash*Freeze. For more information, visit www.microsemi.com/polarfire.
About Future Electronics
Future Electronics is a global leader in electronics distribution, ranking 3rd in component sales worldwide, with an impressive reputation for developing efficient, comprehensive global supply chain solutions, as well as providing differentiated engineering services encompassing technical support, technology training and custom board design. Founded in 1968 by Robert Miller, President, Future Electronics has established itself as one of the most innovative organizations in the industry today, with 5,500 employees in 169 offices in 44 countries around the world. Future Electronics is globally integrated, with one worldwide IT infrastructure providing real-time inventory availability and access, while enabling full integration of its operations, sales and marketing worldwide. Offering the highest level of service, the most advanced engineering capabilities and technical solutions through all stages of the design-production cycle, and the largest available-to-sell inventory in the world, Future's mission is always to Delight the Customer®. For more information, visit www.FutureElectronics.com.
Microsemi Corporation (Nasdaq: MSCC) offers a comprehensive portfolio of semiconductor and system solutions for aerospace & defense, communications, data center and industrial markets. Products include high-performance and radiation-hardened analog mixed-signal integrated circuits, FPGAs, SoCs and ASICs; power management products; timing and synchronization devices and precise time solutions, setting the world's standard for time; voice processing devices; RF solutions; discrete components; enterprise storage and communication solutions, security technologies and scalable anti-tamper products; Ethernet solutions; Power-over-Ethernet ICs and midspans; as well as custom design capabilities and services. Microsemi is headquartered in Aliso Viejo, California and has approximately 4,800 employees globally. Learn more at www.microsemi.com.