NXP Semiconductors has launched its flagship AI-enabled i.MX 95 edge microprocessor.
The i.MX 95, launched at CES 2023 this week, is the first i.MX applications processor family to integrate NXP’s eIQ Neutron neural processing unit (NPU) alongside a new image signal processor (ISP) to help developers build edge platforms.
The eIQ Neutron NPU can be used with the vision processing pipeline with multiple camera sensors or network-attached smart cameras for industrial, robotics, medical and automotive applications. The ISP is optimized for machine vision applications and supports two Regions of Interest, HDR combination of two exposures, and advanced de-noising and edge enhancement with support for colour, monochrome and RGB-IR camera sensors
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The i.MX 95 family has up to six ARM Cortex-A55 cores, as well as an independent safety domain consisting of high-performance Arm Cortex-M7 and Arm Cortex-M33 CPUs, combining low-power, real-time, and high-performance processing.
Safety critical design
The family is aimed at safety critical actions in a vehicle, like voice warnings, instrumentation, and cameras meet high reliability standards set by automotive OEMs. Similarly, in industrial factory automation platforms, the functional safety domain helps to ensure that an industrial control system will always return to a pre-determined state, even when rest of the system fails.
An integrated 10-gigabit Ethernet interface with two 1-gigabit Ethernet ports, with time sensitive networking (TSN) capabilities and five CAN-FD ports support edge designs in Industry 4.0 and IoT smart home gateways with support for LPDDR5 and LPDDR4X DRAM. Connectivity is added via two independent PCIe ports, USB 3 port and integrated BSP-level drivers for NXP’s range of wireless connectivity devices.
The chip was designed for a 16nm FINFET process and developed in compliance with automotive ASIL-B and industrial SIL-2 functional safety standards and includes an integrated EdgeLock secure enclave. This simplifies implementation of security critical functions like secure boot, cryptography, trust provisioning, and run-time attestation.
On-the-fly memory encryption enables secure data processing to help ensure privacy and security in a wide range of applications. A dedicated cryptographic engine provides support for a wide range of standards enables next-generation automotive V2X applications.
Combined with NXP’s EdgeLock 2 GO key management services, manufacturers can securely provision i.MX 95 SoC-based products for secure remote management of devices deployed in the field, including secure over-the-air updates (OTA).
The i.MX 95 family also implements NXP’s innovative Energy Flex architecture that enables fine-grained independent power management of Cortex-A applications domain and real-time Cortex-M safety domain. This allows developers to run the real-time safety domain at all times for sensor data monitoring; and power up the applications domain only when necessary to minimize system-level energy consumption.
“The i.MX 95 family brings unparalleled features and performance to markets like automotive and industrial where security and safety are key. The i.MX 95 brings together NXP eIQ Neutron NPU, Arm Mali graphics, integrated heterogeneous safety domain, and networking capabilities to create a truly unique solution,” said Rafael Sotomayor, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Secure Connected Edge at NXP. “Combining our deep expertise in functional safety with AI acceleration, high performance CPU cores, and high-throughput connectivity, NXP is creating the standard for a new generation of safe and secure edge platforms.”
All i.MX 8 series and i.MX 9 series products are guaranteed for a minimum of 15 years of availability as members of the NXP product longevity program. The i.MX 95 applications processors are expected to begin sampling for lead customers in 2H 2023.