Renesas and Hilscher to develop 40nm high end ARM chip for industrial automation

November 23, 2011 //By Nick Flaherty
Renesas and Hilscher to develop 40nm high end ARM chip for industrial automation
Renesas Electronics Europe has teamed up with industrial communication systems company Hilscher to develop a customisable 40nm system-on-chip (SoC) based around a combination of the ARM Cortex-A9 and R4 processor cores.

The netX 4000 will be a new member of Hilscher's next-generation, high-end communication controller series in 2013 and will provide a base set of high-speed peripherals such as PCI Express, USB 2.0, Gigabit Ethernet, encryption and graphics acceleration. 

The approach is similar to ARM's BIG.little architecture for mobile phones that uses the Cortex-A15MP as an applications processor and the Cortex-A7 for real time tasks, but has a user logic area that allows customers to modify the base SoC according to their individual needs.

Standard peripherals such as DDR2 memory interface, SRAM/flash interface, SD Card interface, high-accuracy ADCs and standard timer units are also included in the SoC to allow early software development. With four universal communication channels to run field buses and real-time Ethernet systems, the device is aimed at automation devices like programmable logic controls (PLCs), human machine interfaces (HMIs) and drives. 

It also supports a set of ready-to-use operating systems such as Linux and several software drivers related to standard peripherals and graphics software are planned in order to enable an easy-to-reuse system for integration into future high-end controls for motion control, inverter drives, logic controls, HMIs or other industrial PC-type processing.

www.renesas.eu


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