Celoxica (AIM:CXA) and DRC Corporation today announced the availability of a computing workstation that couples the AMD Opteron(TM) processor with a dynamically reconfigurable coprocessor module manufactured by DRC and populated with the award-winning Virtex(TM)-4 FPGA device from Xilinx, Inc. This high-performance computing development system combines the power of FPGA co-processing with the productivity and ease-of-use of a software compilation flow.
Software compilation technology from Celoxica is used to program the FPGA in the DRC Coprocessor Module. The module is connected directly to the native HyperTransport(TM) technology interface for low-latency operation and resource sharing between the AMD Opteron processor and DRC’s coprocessor. This innovative combination provides an alternative architecture for processor augmentation by exhibiting as much as 300x performance improvement over software-only solutions while lowering power and heat requirements.
Previous attempts to off-load processing into parallel and programmable hardware architectures have been hampered by price, performance, and capacity barriers as well as the lack of software programming tools. As discussed in a joint presentation from AMD, Celoxica, and Xilinx at the Embedded Systems Conference in San Jose earlier this month, the current generation of FPGA, interconnect and software compilation technologies have overcome these barriers, resulting in the availability of solutions such as this computing development workstation.
“The DRC Coprocessor Module coupled with the AMD Opteron(TM) processor with Direct Connect Architecture establishes a cost-effective, accelerated-computing platform,” said Randy Allen, corporate vice president, Server and Workstation Division, AMD. “With the easy-to-use programming environment from Celoxica, programmers can now realise compelling economic and technological advantages of hardware acceleration.”
“DRC has developed unique patented technology to let the programmable hardware communicate in a true tightly-coupled co-processing environment with the system processors,” said Larry Laurich, president and CEO of DRC Computer Corporation. “With the Celoxica software tools, the user can easily choose the best processing environment for each part of their algorithm to achieve the highest possible performance in the most cost-effective implementation.”
The HPC Development System available from DRC and Celoxica is a platform for exploration of applications for FPGA co-processing. Each workstation contains a motherboard with a Dual-Core AMD Opteron(TM) processor and a DRC Coprocessor Module, and each system includes the Celoxica design environment for programming the FPGA from software algorithms. The systems are complete with DDR memory, disk drive, and a graphics controller. Models and prices vary based on the amount of memory, and the number, speed and size of the processors and re-configurable modules. Customers may use this system to process their algorithms, or may explore the system off-load performance to design their own custom configuration.
“The DRC and Celoxica acceleration platform leverages the enormous potential of Virtex-4 FPGAs as a co-processor to industry-leading general purpose processors like the AMD Opteron processor. Algorithms embedded in large applications can be greatly accelerated to improve the overall compute performance for systems in many different markets such as scientific and medical imaging,” said Krishna Rangasayee, senior director of vertical marketing and partnerships at Xilinx.
Phil Bishop, CEO for Celoxica said, “Celoxica and DRC have combined state-of-the-art processors, programmable hardware, high-speed interconnect, and software compilation technology to deliver high-performance accelerated computing for applications that were never able to take advantage of hardware processing before.”
A leader in electronic system level design (ESL) and FPGA-based acceleration, Celoxica is enabling the next generation of advanced electronic products by producing tools, boards, IP and services that turn software into silicon. Celoxica technology raises design abstraction to the algorithm level, accelerating productivity and lowering risk and costs by programming semiconductor hardware directly from C-based software descriptions. Adding to a growing installed base, Celoxica provides the world’s most widely used C-based behavioural design and synthesis solutions to companies developing products in markets such as consumer electronics, defence and aerospace, automotive, industrial and security. Celoxica is a publicly traded company on the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange under the symbol CXA.
DRC is a leading provider of dynamically reconfigurable coprocessing modules that plug directly into server/workstation processor sockets. DRC delivers complete solutions for solving compute-intensive problems and for accelerating high-performance applications. With the DRC Coprocessor Module and DRC Development Systems, DRC addresses the HPC industry’s growing physical limitations of compute power, heat, clock speed, and density. Founded in 2004, DRC is headquartered in Santa Clara, California.
Celoxica and the Celoxica logo are trademarks of Celoxica Holdings plc.