National Instruments moves to annual upgrade - Embedded.com

National Instruments moves to annual upgrade

LONDON — National Instruments is adopting an annual release cycle for LabVIEW, with version names based on the year of release.

LabVIEW 2009, the latest version of National Instruments' graphical system design software platform for control, test and embedded system development makes it possible to develop embedded systems using a variety of programming tools including graphical programming language, C code, hardware description language (HDL) and text-based math.

The latest version of LabVIEW provides increased field-programmable gate array (FPGA) support, expanded multicore capability and virtualised embedded systems.

Design time and cost can be reduced by using graphical tools along with existing source code, working with LabVIEW throughout the complete design process by using the new NI C Interface to LabVIEW FPGA that helps C designers program in real time on NI hardware and interface to an FPGA without knowledge of HDL programming.

LabVIEW features built-in math libraries that contain more than 1,000 functions ranging from low-level, point-by-point signal processing to high-level, configuration-based implementations, all of which can be deployed to real-time embedded devices.

With the LabVIEW MathScript RT Module, LabVIEW 2009 expands access to real-time math, which is the implementation and deployment of mathematical algorithms to deterministic operating systems, for engineers and scientists using text-based math tools.

The module also provides engineers and scientists the ability to incorporate their own existing .m files using interactive user interfaces and real-world I/O and easily deploy them to real-time hardware for faster system prototyping.

By simplifying the process of deploying math algorithms to real-time OSs, LabVIEW 2009 can help medical device designers, machine builders and autonomous system designers shorten product time to market.

The LabVIEW 2009 FPGA Module features and NI FPGA-based hardware enable graphical FPGA intellectual property (IP) blocks to be used for signal processing and analysis. A compilation experience in LabVIEW simplifies FPGA programming by providing early compile feedback and critical path highlighting to receive early estimates on FPGA resource usage and better debug timing violations. LabVIEW 2009 also offers FPGA IP for communicating with embedded sensors, high-throughput math functions and improvements to the Component-Level IP (CLIP) interface for importing HDL code into FPGAs.

Virtualization technology makes it possible to run multiple OSs side by side on the same multicore processing hardware. NI Real-Time Hypervisor software combines the power of the LabVIEW Real-Time Module with general-purpose OS capabilities to reduce overall system cost and size.

Windows XP and LabVIEW Real-Time OSs can be run side by side on the same controller, partitioning the processor cores among the two OSs for more efficient use of system resources. Real-Time Hypervisor software works with dual- and quad-core NI PXI controllers as well as the NI 3110 industrial controller.

Related links and articles:

Overcoming Multicore Programming Challenges with LabVIEW

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