Lattice unveils world’s smallest FPGA for miniature systems

http://www.eetimes.com/electronics-products/electronic-product-reviews/fpga-pld-products/4409672/Lattice-unveils-world-s-smallest-FPGA-for-miniature-systems?cid=Newsletter+-+MCUs+DesignLine

Lattice   unveils

world’s smallest FPGA for miniature systems

Clive Maxfield    3/11/2013 9:36 AM EDT

Lattice Semiconductor has announced the iCE40 LP384 FPGA – the smallest member of its expanding iCE40 family of ultra-low density FPGAs. Enabling designers to rapidly add new features and differentiate cost-sensitive, space-constrained, low-power products, the new small footprint FPGA is ideal for applications such as portable medical monitors, smartphones, digital cameras, eReaders, and compact embedded systems.

The tiny, low- power, low cost iCE40 LP384 FPGA has a capacity of 384 LUTs; consumes only 25uW static core power; comes in packages as small as 2.5mm x 2.5mm with a migration path to 2.0mm x 2.0mm; and costs less than 50 cents per unit in multi- million unit quantities.

“While system footprints continue to shrink, designers must constantly search for new ways to add more functionality so they can process more information,” said Brent Przybus, Senior Director of Corporate and Product Marketing at Lattice Semiconductor. “The iCE40 LP384 FPGA offers the perfect architecture for capturing and processing large amounts of data at hardware speeds while using very little power and board space. It deftly handles system tasks such as managing sensor interfaces, adapting to new interface standards, and offloading the CPU without requiring fully custom-designed chips.”

New applications drive hardware innovation 

The exponential growth of handheld applications is creating new challenges for hardware designers.  Many new applications today connect end users with data collected from a growing number of sensors that measure natural phenomena such as temperature, moisture, light, and positioning.

  At the same time the growing use of video is driving the deployment of new low power, display technology that not only enhances the visual experience, but does so without breaking stringent power budgets.  

Moreover, small automated control units are now being used to maximize energy efficiency and security in buildings and homes by responding to light, infrared, noise, and by adjusting fans, blinds, and temperature controls. 

Designers of these types of equipment must find ways to shrink the size of their systems while differentiating their products from competitive market offerings.  

The iCE40 LP384 solution

The iCE40 LP384 FPGA includes the programmable logic, flexible IO, and on-chip memory necessary to process data at speeds greater than ASSPs or companion microprocessors while simultaneously reducing power consumption for an equivalent cost.

Lattice also provides reference designs and application notes to accelerate development and reduce time-to-market by several months.   

Development software

Lattice’s iCEcube2 development software is a feature-rich development platform for Lattice’s iCE40 FPGAs.

It integrates a free synthesis tool with Lattice’s placement and routing tools and it also includes the Aldec Active-HDL simulation solution, with Waveform Viewer and an RTL/gate-level mixed-language simulator.

The iCEcube2 design environment also includes key features and functions that help facilitate the design process for mobile applications.

These features and functions include a project navigator, constraint editor, floorplanner, package viewer, power estimator, and static timing analyzer. 

Please contact your local Lattice sales representative for information on how to download a free license for Lattice iCEcube2 software for use with iCE40 LP384 FPGAs.

Development kits
Lattice iCE40 development kits  minimize the time and cost of starting designs. These platforms simplify the evaluation of device performance and the development of custom designs. Free reference designs are also available.

Availability
The iCE40 LP384 devices are available in sample quantities for customers beginning design evaluation. Present packaging options include: 32-pin QFNs (5.0 mm x 5.0 mm); 36-ball ucBGAs (2.5 mm x 2.5 mm); and 49-pin ucBGAs (3.0 mm x 3.0 mm).

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