When I wrote about Flex Logix's, ability to add the FPGA of your choice right onto your system-on-chip (SoC), I got a barrage of comments and a call from an executive at Menta SAS (Montpellier, France), both saying Menta had already been doing that for years.
Turns out, the two companies use different methods to reach similar conclusions, since Flex Logix wants to install the hardware FPGA onto your prefabbed SoC, whereas Menta is a software-only company that sells you the electronic design automation (EDA) tools plus the FPGA intellectual property (IP) to do the job yourself.
As you can see from the diagrams below, Menta provides the EDA software to design what it calls its eFPGA (embedded field programmable gate array), which can be used on the chip of your choice, mostly SoCs.
“Menta has the IP for both custom and pre-defined embedded FPGAs, which can be integrated in a wide range of SoCs,” Julien Eydoux, chief technology officer (CTO) told EE Times.
Menta has been developing its Origami toolset for several years and have a few design-wins, but the big news is that the company has won-over the European Union.
In particular, the European Defense Agency has just finished testing and has qualified Menta's eFPGA IP for use in its EDA-SoC program, which combines resources from France, Italy, Germany and Norway. Embedded FPGAs in the European Defense Agency's SoC's will now make use of Menta's toolkits. Besides the countries involved, 14 defense contractors will also be using Menta's IP to manufacture and test SoC platforms with 32-bit reduced instruction set (RISC) processors, along with other specialized IP blocks from other providers. All of which can be transferred to traditional EDA tools using various different methods.