KEIL and DOLPHIN Integration launch hardware/software coverification for mixed signal system-on-chip and MEMS applications around 8051 processors

Keil and Dolphin Integration prove the worth of development platforms based on the SUCCESS™ linking process for higher design productivity.

Keil GmbH of Grasbrunn, Germany and DOLPHIN Integration SA of Meylan, France are announcing jointly at DAC-2003 in Anaheim that they performed the linking of Integrated Development Environment (IDE) µVision2 together with multi-level mixed signal simulator SMASH for developing a Hardware / Software coverification platform.

A growing number of SoC designers are recognizing the importance of hardware/software co-development in verifying their Virtual components of IP within each target SoC application.

Early user experiences show that linking process SUCCESS™ brings significant gains in verification productivity as long as the IDE provides an effective Instruction Set Simulator (ISS). Users have reported savings of one to three months in typical embedded project schedules.

ICE capabilities ahead of hardware!

While the advantages of a Virtual Test Methodology (VTM), i.e. coverification of the test program and the circuit on an electronic simulator, is used for reducing Time-To-Market of SoC designs, innovative solutions are emerging to increase designers’ productivity thanks to complete hardware / software coverification.

No traditional design methodology addresses current trends whereby 70% of Systems-on-Chip are expected to be mixed-signal in 2007, while MEMS make simulation mandatory and no convenient solutions were available to fill this missing EDA link.

On the one hand, hardware designers relish validating, at system level, whether the microprocessor is correctly connected to each peripheral, but also validating the functionality of peripherals in their SoC environment.

On the other hand, software engineers use Instruction Set Simulators (ISS) to debug their embedded application. These simulators are included within a fully Integrated Development Environment (IDE) that provides integration and access to all the professional developer’s tools, from editing to compiling, linking, and debugging of embedded software.

solated ISS and hardware simulators are readily available from diverse suppliers. They present differences in simulation speed, functionalities and ease of use. But none can offer a complete solution for simulating your whole SoC with its software application, i.e. simulation of the microprocessor together with interconnected peripherals: logic (I2C, SPI…), analog (ADC, DAC, amplifiers, PLL…), memories… which may be described in VERILOG-HDL, VHDL, SPICE, VHDL-AMS, C-language…

Mapping a SoC onto SUCCESS

SUCCESS™ allows designers to save costly time of their design flow while increasing the chance of a success at the first pass!

SUCCESS™ can be used at three stages of the design flow.

* SUCCESS™ when validating the choice of architecture for verifying of the hardware/software partitioning, selecting the micro-controller options the most adapted to the application, choosing the mixed signal peripherals
and checking the interactions between the microcontroller and the peripherals.

For this stage of the design flow, high level models are generally used.

** SUCCESS™ when validating the SoC hardware configuration for checking-out the interconnections of mixed signal peripherals with the microcontroller, verifying that each ViC or block still functions within the SoC, checking-out of the different working modes of the SoC (including its test modes) and for developing and checking-out of test routines

For this stage, a mix of high level and pin-accurate simulation models are used while short test cases must be developed in assembler or C.

*** SUCCESS when validating the application program to embed in a SoC in order to checking-up of the application software within the SoC and making exhaustive exercising for asynchronous events

Based on the first uses of SUCCESS™, this methodology improves design team productivity by reducing the validation stages.

SUCCESS with µVision2

SUCCESS has been first developed for Dolphin’s Flip8051 family of Virtual Components, with µVision2 IDE from KEIL

The Flip8051 family is comprised with 8 options with various architectures, optimized either in speed or density, enabling to speed-up the execution of the application program by factors comprised between one and eleven times. The extra processing power can also be used to run the same application at a lower frequency, so as to save power.

Dolphin Integration has now enriched its successful 8051 family with the Flip80251, the first accelerated version of the 80C251, which is the 16-bit extension of the legacy 80C51 developed by Intel already supported by Keil.
Flip80251 is the fastest and the more powerful Virtual Component available on the market for 8051-based application.

As each Flip8051 / Flip80251 options and specific features are supported by Keil’s µVision2, SUCCESS allows a SoC designer to connect an instruction accurate model representing the exact configuration of the Flip8051 / Flip80251 with any logic, analog or mixed signal peripheral.

Pricing and Availability

SUCCESS is available under Windows. Pricing ranges from $ 15,000 to $39,000 depending on the configuration. It is a registered trademark of DOLPHIN Integration.

More technical information and downloadable demonstration of SUCCESS™

About KEIL Software

Keil Software makes C compilers, macro assemblers, real-time kernels, debuggers, simulators, integrated environments, and evaluation boards for the 8051, 251, C16x/ST10, and ARM7 microcontroller families. Products available from Keil Software include embedded development tools, evaluation software, product updates, application notes, example code, and technical support.

More information is available from: www.keil.com

About DOLPHIN Integration

DOLPHIN Integration, provider of “Service Empowered IP” for Logic, Analog and Memory Virtual Components, offers a wide range of design products with support services; from turnkey design to consulting support for customers wanting efficient insertion of FLIP virtual components from kits into their SoC development. DOLPHIN is a member of the Virtual Socket Interface Alliance (VSIA) and of the Virtual Component exchange (VCX).

Their mission statement is to supply worldwide customers with fault-free, high yield and reliable sets of CMOS Virtual Components together with engineering assistance and product evolution customized to their needs.

For more information on Flip8051 Virtual Components: www.dolphin-integration.com