MCUs – Actel Extends Core8051s Processor Support into hi-rel apps

Mountain View, Ca. – Actel Corporation has extended Core8051s support for its line of high-reliability Axcelerator , radiation-tolerant RTAX and low-power IGLOO FPGAs.

According to the company, the aim of broadening Core8051s support is to allow designers developing high reliability, space-flight or portable embedded designs to make use of 8051-based processors and their code-base in devices based on Actel FPGAs.

Core8051s is an ASM51-compatible 8-bit microcontroller core that runs programs written for the industry standard 8051. The external SFR interface normally present on 8051 microcontrollers is replaced in Core8051s by an advanced peripheral bus (APB) v3.0 interface.

Designers can use Core8051 to instantiate the main 8051 core logic in Actel FPGA fabric, and via the APB v3.0 bus interface they can easily connect any APB IP peripherals. In addition, designers can now customize their design with only the peripheral functions (timers, UARTs, I/O ports) required for their application, optimizing area and freeing FPGA fabric for additional custom digital circuitry.

For designers of low-power systems, the 8051s offers a low-cost, low-power complement to the ARM Cortex-M1 32-bit microprocessor. For designers of space-flight systems and other high-reliability applications, the 8051s adds a small footprint complement to the successful and popular LEON3-FT 32-bit processor, which currently is acquiring space-flight heritage in Actel RTAX2000S FPGAs. Core8051s is already seeing deployment in designs targeting RTAX-S space-flight FPGAs.

Core8051s is available free of charge with Actel's Libero Integrated Design Environment (IDE), using Actel's SmartDesign IP design canvas tool. Libero IDE can be downloaded and installed directly from Actel's website. The Actel Libero IDE Gold edition is available for Windows XP or Vista free of charge. The Actel Libero IDE Platinum edition is available for Windows and Linux platforms for $2,495. All editions are one-year renewable licenses.

To learn more go to www.actel.com.

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