Development kit for radiation-tolerant FPGAs

Microsemi Corporation (Nasdaq: MSCC), a provider of semiconductor solutions differentiated by power, security, reliability and performance, announced the availability of its RTG4™ FPGA Development Kit. The first kit of its kind provides space designers with an evaluation and development platform for applications such as data transmission, serial connectivity, bus interface and high-speed designs using Microsemi’s RTG4 high-speed signal processing radiation-tolerant field programmable gate array (FPGA) device.

RTG4“Our RTG4 Development Kit provides customers ease of design for space applications, which we expect to drive design activity as we provide a standard platform showcasing RTG4 capabilities, intellectual property (IP) performance, as well as interoperability with Microsemi’s industry-leading portfolio of space solutions,” said Minh Nguyen, senior marketing manager for space and aviation at Microsemi. “In addition to Microsemi’s commitment to the space industry as the leading supplier of FPGAs for applications requiring mitigation of radiation effects, this new development kit affirms our dedication to providing evaluation and development solutions to help designers successfully leverage our latest technologies.”

The development kit provides all necessary reference to evaluate and adopt RTG4 technology quickly, without the need to build a test board and assemble the device onto the board. The RTG4 Development Kit is ideal for evaluating and designing for remote sensing space payloads, radar and imaging, as well as spectrometry in civilian, scientific and commercial applications. Other applications include mobile satellite services (MSS) communication satellites, as well as high altitude aviation, medical electronics and civilian nuclear power plant control.

“The extensive logic, memory, DSP blocks and IO capabilities of Microsemi’s RTG4 FPGA with its inherent radiation tolerance and inbuilt configuration memory make this device perfect for spacecraft on-board applications,” said Prof. Steve Parkes, managing director of U.K. space company, STAR-Dundee. “As a world leader in SpaceWire network technology for spacecraft onboard data-handling, we took advantage of RTG4’s embedded SpaceWire clock recovery circuits and high-speed SERDES capabilities to quickly demonstrate our flight-proven SpaceWire IP running at over 200 Mb/sec, and our next-generation SpaceFibre IP at 2.5 Gb/sec using Microsemi’s RTG4 Development Kit. We believe that RTG4 FPGAs and our advanced IPs will make for a winning combination, creating great value for our space customers.”

According to Marco Caceres, senior analyst and director of space studies for the Virginia-based Teal Group consulting firm, the next 10 years will see an increase of about 25 percent in the number of new spacecraft of 50Kg mass or larger. He expects these new spacecraft will have more sophisticated payload electronics than their predecessors, doing more on-board data processing to maximize data acquisition while dealing with limited downlink bandwidth.

About Microsemi’s RTG4 FPGAs
RTG4 FPGAs bring new capabilities to the market and combine a wealth of features with the highest quality and reliability to meet the increasing demands of modern satellite payloads. The devices feature reprogrammable flash configuration, making prototyping easier for customers. RTG4’s reprogrammable flash technology offers complete immunity to radiation-induced configuration upsets in the harshest radiation environments, without the configuration scrubbing required with SRAM FPGA technology. RTG4 supports space applications requiring up to 150,000 logic elements and up to 300 MHz of system performance. RTG4 is Microsemi’s latest development in a long history of radiation-tolerant FPGAs that are found in many NASA and international space programs. For more information, visit

RTG4 Development Kit features include:

One RT4G150 device in a ceramic package with 1,657 pins
Two 1GB DDR3 synchronous dynamic random access memory (SDRAM)
2GB SPI flash memory
PCI Express Gen 1 interface
One pair SMA connectors for testing of the full-duplex SERDES channel
Two FMC connectors with HPC/LPC pinout for expansion
RJ45 interface for 10/100/1000 Ethernet
USB micro-AB connector
Embedded Flashpro5 programmer and external programming header
Current measurement test points
Demonstration and Lab Guides
Several demonstration guides and tutorials are available to support users of the RTG4 Development Kit, including:

DG0624: RTG4 FPGA SERDES EPCS Protocol Design Demo Guide
DG0622: RTG4 FPGA PCIe Data Plane Demo Using Two Channel Fabric DMA Demo Guide
LG0623: RTG4 FPGA Fabric Lab Guide
DG0625: Interfacing RTG4 FPGA with the External DDR3 Memory Through FDDR Demo Guide
DG0630: RTG4 FPGA DSP FIR Filter Demo Guide
Packaging and Availability
The RTG4 Development Kit features a RT4G150 device offering more than 150,000 logic elements in a ceramic package with 1,657 pins. Kits are available now for purchase. For more information, visit or contact Microsemi’s sales team at

Microsemi Leading Space Innovation for More than Half a Century
With one of the industry’s most comprehensive portfolios of space products, Microsemi provides radiation-tolerant FPGAs, rad-hard mixed-signal ICs, rad-hard DC-to-DC converters, precision time and frequency solutions, linear and POL hybrids, custom hybrid solutions, and rad-hard discretes including the broadest portfolio of JANS Class diodes and bipolar products. Microsemi is committed to supporting its products throughout the lifetime of its customer programs and recently announced the new LX7730 radiation-tolerant telemetry controller IC providing key functions for sensor monitoring, attitude and payload control. For more information about Microsemi’s space products, visit

Microsemi Space Forum
Microsemi’s technical experts along with its partners will be presenting the most innovative space-related products, capabilities, technology roadmaps, as well as solutions to combat the effects of radiation during its Space Forum. In addition, Microsemi system architects and application engineers will discuss space system-level challenges and potential solutions. To register for the remaining Microsemi Space Forum dates, visit:


The post Development kit for radiation-tolerant FPGAs appeared first on FPGA Tips.