SoCMosaic Custom Chip Software Design Flow Preserves Same Programming Environment from Program Start to Silicon, Can Shave Up to One Year Off Software Development
SAN JOSE , Calif., Oct., 09, 2003 -- Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. (TAEC)* today announced details of its SoCMosaic™ custom chip hardware/software (HW/SW) co-development strategy designed to help software engineers developing code for an SoCMosaic custom chip significantly reduce software development time by as much as one year. The company further announced that it has selected the WhiteEagle® Systems Technology SwordFish Emulation Platform, an FPGA emulation solution, and the Mentor Graphics® Corporation Seamless® Version 5 co-verification tool as its first two co-development environments.
"Our SoCMosaic custom chip HW/SW co-development strategy builds on our SoCMosaic custom chip fast, time-to-market approach for IP-rich custom SoCs. We believe we've come up with a new way of bringing the time savings and cost efficiencies of HW/SW co-development to our SoCMosaic custom chip customers," said Richard Tobias, vice president of the ASIC and Foundry Business Unit at TAEC. "We provide a development environment that is a front end to a variety of simulation modes with an application programming interface that further abstracts the models, making them all look the same to the software. In short, our SoCMosaic custom chip software design flow ties all the tools together seamlessly and lets our customers start software development right away." Mr. Tobias noted that the SwordFish Emulation Platform from WhiteEagle was designed from the ground up specifically for the SoCMosaic custom chip program while Seamless from Mentor Graphics provides a proven, rich co-verification environment.
"As the industry's leading hardware/software co-verification environment, we value Toshiba's selection of the Mentor Graphics Seamless technology for its SoCMosaic custom chip strategy," said Serge Leef, general manager of Mentor Graphics SoC Verification division. "Collaboration with Toshiba to tailor the Seamless solution for SoCMosaic custom chip provides a leading-edge co-verification environment for our mutual customers who are designing the next-generation communications and digital consumer products."
Compared to conventional approaches, the SoCMosaic custom chip HW/SW co-development environment allows software development to begin as much as one year sooner. In addition, this method helps ensure working first silicon; customers avoid the cost and delay of chip re-spins due to bugs that could have been found using simulation. Customers can run their complex software on the SoC while it is in development, executing their code on a functional model, a mixed function/register-transfer level (RTL) model and an FPGA emulator that achieves ten percent of the clock speed of the final SoC. Software engineers can use the same programming and debugging environment throughout the entire process, from the C model all the way to the working end product.
"We are very pleased that Toshiba selected us to provide technology and services that assist their customers in achieving their SoCMosaic custom chip design goals," said William Wu, vice president of Hardware Engineering at WhiteEagle Systems Technology. "Our approach of extending the SoCMosaic custom chip standardized bus interface on our system is capable of emulation speeds up to 40MHz and can model chips as large as 40 million gates. Additionally the emulation provides a huge benefit to the software development team by providing a development and verification platform long before the silicon is ready."
The SoCMosaic custom chip HW/SW co-development environment provides a front panel that allows software developers to work with different types of SoC simulation modes. Programmers use the SoCMosaic custom chip Platform Support Package (PSP) to develop their code which is independent of the simulation mode. The customer's software can be migrated seamlessly to any supported run-time environment, including functional model, mixed functional/gate model, FPGA, the T6TC1XB-0001 development board and the custom SoC. The PSP also provides a consistent run-time environment for C code. The environment supports a broad range of programming and debugging tools, including JTAG in-circuit emulator interfaces.
About the WhiteEagle SwordFish Emulation System
The WhiteEagle SwordFish Emulation System is a hardware box with an expandable emulation engine and a wide bandwidth host interface. Customizable I/O interface cards, design automation tools and host application software round out the product. The bundled EDA and host application software makes it easy to integrate the SwordFish Emulation System with existing design flows. This system is targeted for the customers of the SoCMosaic custom chip platform that want parallel development of software with hardware, and hardware verification with real time I/O in the early development phase.
The basic system includes the host interface hardware and the chassis that houses the backplane with a single blade of the emulation engine. The customer has the option to upgrade the speed and capacities of the FPGAs on each emulation blade, upgrade the system to contain multiple blades and request custom-built I/O cards.
About the Mentor Graphics Seamless HW/SW Co-Verification Environment
Linking popular software development and debug tools with logic simulation, the Seamless environment delivers high performance co-verification months before a hardware prototype can be built. The Seamless environment enables software and hardware development to be parallel activities, removing software from the critical path and reducing the risk of hardware prototype iterations resulting from integration errors. The Seamless Version 5 tool adds the ability to analyze code, bus and memory performance. These capabilities allow not only the validation of hardware/software interactions, but also give measurement on the quality of the system and guidance on where improvements can be made. For more information, please go to www.mentor.com/seamless.
SoCMosaic Custom Chip HW/SW Co-Development Roadmap
- TAEC is planning to roll out the following additional tools:
- System-level architectural simulation.
- A debug environment.
- High-level C models for functional execution of the design before implementation and early software development before the hardware is ready.
- New tools for very efficient optimization in area, power or speed.
Pricing and Availability
The development environment is available now to customers of the SoCMosaic custom chip program. Pricing consists of tool licensing fees and engineering costs that depend on project complexity. Specific tools and models vary according to project and are available from their respective vendors.
About SoCMosaic Custom Chip
SoCMosaic custom chip is a Soft IP Platform-based design approach for IP-rich designs that can deliver a custom SoC in as little as six months. With this approach, customers retain complete control over their architecture, tapping TAEC's deep IC, system and software experience to implement the design from RTL integration through delivery of ICs, including customized on-chip interconnect, power management and debug/trace support. SoCMosaic custom chip achieves rapid development of complex SoC designs by using commodity IP blocks, standardized bus interfaces, a scalable bus system, an RTL test bench and high-level, cycle-accurate C simulation. Pre-verified, pre-tested commodity and differentiating IP allows maximum flexibility. System level support includes hardware and software design (with firmware and middleware) running on cycle-accurate system-level models for early development of application software. The T6TC1XB-0001 ARM-based controller, available now, is aimed at embedded applications that combine application-specific functions with a single control processor running Linux or an RTOS, for example, low-end networking and consumer convergence applications. The SoCMosaic custom chip approach has been well accepted in the consumer and communications markets and TAEC is currently working with a number of customers.
Combining quality and flexibility with design engineering expertise, TAEC brings a breadth of advanced, next-generation technologies to its customers. This broad offering includes semiconductors, flash memory-based storage solutions, optical communication devices, displays and rechargeable batteries for the computing, wireless, networking, automotive and digital consumer markets.
TAEC is an independent operating company owned by Toshiba America, Inc., a subsidiary of Toshiba, the third largest semiconductor company worldwide in terms of global sales for the year 2002 according to Gartner/Dataquest's Worldwide Semiconductor Market Share Ranking. Toshiba is a world leader in high-technology products with more than 300 major subsidiaries and affiliates worldwide. For additional company and product information, please visit TAEC's website at chips.toshiba.com. For technical inquiries, please e-mail Tech.Questions@taec.toshiba.com.
Information in this press release, including product pricing and specifications, content of services and contact information, is current on the date of the announcement, but is subject to change without prior notice.
All other trademarks or registered trademarks are the property of their respective holders.