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Verisity adds accelerators, emulators to Axis line

Posted: 25 Mar 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:verisity? verilog? vhdl? systemc? programmable processors?

Verisity Ltd plans to add dynamically programmable processors to the XoC, Xtreme, and Xcite acceleration and emulation products it acquired in the deal last month for Axis Systems Inc. The additions will let designers map behavioral constructs directly into hardware.

Designers will be able to map behavioral Verilog or VHDL, SystemC, assertions and specialty memories like CAMs into Verisity's acceleration or emulation systems without severe restrictions, said director of product marketing Michael Young.

"In the past, the types of constructs we have mapped into the hardware [accelerators and emulators] had been a synthesizable subset," Young said. "But now we have softened that restriction to include behavioral objects." For example, he said, it once would have been impossible to map a wire loop into the hardware, "but now we have added enough intelligence . . . to do this."

Verisity is looking at the technology as a way to map assertions that are not synthesizable into hardware, Young said.

Steve Glaser, Verisity's VP of marketing, said the technology can be used for "targetless emulation," where all behavioral representations can map directly into the company's emulation or acceleration systems.

"We talked to one customer who said that they had 3,000 assertions in their design and they said it slowed down acceleration tremendously," Glaser said. "Thus, if you can map assertions natively into the hardware, it is a huge benefit-a huge speed-up in verification."

The technology would also improve debugging, Young said, and could ultimately help speed up testbenches.

"That's one of the key reasons we acquired Axis," said Glaser. "Using an event-based acceleration and emulation was fundamental to providing a seamless transition from an integrated design testbench and assertion representation into this higher speed form that Axis offers for acceleration at the chip and system level."

Axis was best known for event-driven hardware acceleration and emulation solutions, which are more like standard simulators and unlike cycle-based hardware systems.

Glaser said the technology is now being used at beta sites. Products supporting the direct mapping of system-level constructs are expected to be available later this year.

- Mike Santarini

EE Times

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