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Xilinx FPGA Architecture

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  • Last Updated : 10 Mar, 2022
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FPGA, which stands for field-programmable gate array, can be used to solve any computable issue. It is an integrated circuit that may be customized after manufacturing by a client or a designer. To be more specific, FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays) are semiconductor devices that consist of a matrix of CLBs or customizable logic blocks linked by programmable interconnects.  

Here, in this article, we will discuss the FPGAs also known as Field Programmable Gate Arrays, their work, and Architecture. This post will also introduce you to Xilinx. Xilinx is considered a leading company in this field. it offers comprehensive solutions including FPGA devices, powerful software, and configurable, ready-to-use IP cores for the marketplace and variety of applications.

Xilinx FPGAs are well known for running a standard embedded operating system, such as Linux or VxWorks. And implementing processor peripherals in programmable logic. The FPGA families Virtex-II Pro, Virtex-4, Virtex-5, and Virtex-6, which have up to two embedded IBM PowerPC cores, are specially made for system-on-chip (SoC) designers.

FPGAs Architecture 

FPGAs from Xilinx are hybrid computation systems with Block RAMs, programmable fabric, DSP Slices, and PCI Express support. Just Because all of these compute resources can be accessed at the same time, they enable scalability and pipelining of applications throughout the entire platform. SD Accel is a Xilinx utility that allows OpenCL programs to target and enable these computational resources.

Components : The basic structure of FPGAs is made of the following components:

  1. A look-up table or LUT: This component is responsible for performing logic operations.
  2. Flip-Flop: The result of the LUT is stored in this register element.
  3. Wires: These are the elements that connect the elements.
  4. I/O pads: These physical ports allow data to enter and exit the FPGA.

Here, the basic architecture of FPGA is shown in the following image which is an outcome of integrating these pieces.

FPGA components

FPGA components

The main features of modern FPGA structure are combined with extra computational and data storage blocks to enhance the device’s computational density and efficiency. Here, some additional points are given below to understand the concept better.

  1. Embedded memories for distributed data storage
  2. PLLs or Phase-locked loops for driving the FPGA fabric at different clock rates
  3. High-speed serial transceivers
  4. Off-chip memory controllers
  5. Multiply-accumulate block

Xilinx FPGA

Here, in modern FPGA design, the combination of these pieces is shown in the image, allowing the FPGA to implement any software method that is executing on a processor.

Applications:

FPGAs are a suitable match for a variety of markets due to their working nature and programmability. In this field, Xilinx is considered the most trusted company, which offers the most detailed and effective solutions including FPGA devices, configurable and powerful software ready-to-use IP cores for applications like Aerospace, Automotive systems, Broadcast and Pro-AV, Defence, consumer electronics, Data centers, industrials, and high data storage related applications and so on.  

Here, we’ve tried to describe some of the most common applications for FPGAs, which are listed below:

  1. Automotive: The Xilinx Automotive platform is essential in powering highly advanced AD modules, which are progressively demanding better performance and capacity to enable high-speed data processing, pre-processing, distribution (DAPD), and computation acceleration.
  2. FPGA-Based ASIC Prototyping: FPGA-based ASIC prototyping enables quick and precise SoC system modeling and embedded software verification. It provides high-performance FPGAs for better design verification.  Also, reduce the amount of board area required and the intricacy of the board. It gives a versatile I/O solution to enable the creation of a single device. And Provide advanced debugging, simulation acceleration, and interactive design tweaking
  3. Aerospace and Defence: Xilinx provides commercial, defense, and space-grade system-level solutions to the aerospace and defense industries, including industry-leading FPGA, SoC, and ACAP devices, sophisticated IP solutions, and the next generation of design tools.
  4. Medical: The Virtex FPGA and SpartanĀ® FPGA families can be used to address a variety of processing, display, and I/O interface needs in diagnostic, monitoring, and therapeutic applications.
  5. Consumer Electronics: The Xilinx Solution provides Cost-effective and energy-efficient technologies that enable system-on-chip (SoC) designs, High bandwidth and throughput to accommodate expanding interconnect standards as well as Internet-enabled applications.
  6. Broadcast & Professional AV: With Broadcast-focused Design Platforms and solutions for high-end professional broadcast systems, you can adapt to changing requirements faster and extend product life cycles. Xilinx platforms can quickly adapt to new audio and video technologies, provide access to AV-over-IP networks with lossy and lossless codecs as needed, and integrate multimedia pipelines with the most cutting-edge AI/ML approaches in cost-effective devices.
  7. Data Center: Xilinx FPGAs are best for massively parallel data processing. This functionality reduces the total cost of ownership of edge computing devices while increasing performance by lowering latency. Artificial intelligence developments, increasingly complex workloads, and the availability of unstructured data require rapid data center evolution. With customized computing, storage, and networking acceleration, the Xilinx platform is enabling the evolution.
  8. Computing and Data Storage solutions: Because of customizable Data-paths and storage structures, as well as a powerful developer toolset, Xilinx FPGA enhanced applications can enable efficient hardware and software implementations with the flexibility to adapt to new requirements without sacrificing performance or energy efficiency.
  9. Wired and wireless Communications: In both wired and wireless communications, FPGA chips are employed. They are utilized in backplanes in wired communications and cellular base stations in wireless communications. FPGAs are now employed in networking solutions and to address WiMAX, 5G/6G, and HSDPA requirements.
  10. Industrial: For a wide range of applications such as industrial imaging and surveillance, industrial automation, and Xilinx FPGAs and focused design platforms for Industrial, Scientific, and Medical allows greater flexibility, faster time-to-market, and lower total non-recurring engineering costs.
  11. Security: From access control to surveillance and safety systems, Xilinx has solutions to all the changing needs of security applications.

FPGAs are being used in devices for quite a long time; they are the most cost-effective solutions, with higher performance and programmability, because of their productivity, they are being used in a wide range of applications.

Xilinx is at the top of this industry because of its great quality and low-cost devices. Xilinx provides complete and reliable solutions regarding FPGA devices and the wide range of devices offered by Xilinx.

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