SDR enabled by Virtex-7 FPGA modules from PentekProduct
March 13, 2012
FPGAs are a game changer for many signal-processing applications and especially for Software-Defined Radio (SDR).
FPGAs are a game changer for many signal-processing applications and especially for Software-Defined Radio (SDR). Each generation of FPGA enables more performance than the previous generation, enabling designers to shrink the footprint of military systems, providing more and more performance in even smaller packages. The new Onyx Virtex-7 line of FPGA modules is another example of that trend. The new Model 71760, the next generation of the company’s Virtex-6 Cobalt line, is a four-channel, 200 MHz A/D XMC module targeted at SDR and signal-processing applications in military radar, communication, and Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) programs.
The new Onyx devices have the same modular I/O interfaces as their Virtex-6 FPGA Cobalt line of products, while increasing memory, I/O performance, and logic. The 71760, for instance, is similar to the Pentek Cobalt 71660, but has twice the memory capacity and I/O bandwidth. Because of the compatibility of Cobalt and Onyx, developers will be able to port software originally designed for Cobalt to corresponding Onyx modules.
Enhancements in the Onyx product line include doubling the DDR3 memory in size and speed to 4 GB and 1,600 MHz, respectively. The PCIe interface was upgraded to Gen 3, delivering speeds as fast as 8 GBps. The 71760 FPGA comes preconfigured with a suite of built-in functions for data capture, synchronization, tagging, and formatting. Onyx also has enhanced FPGA loading modes for easier live reconfiguration. About 12 more Onyx products will be released throughout the year.