[FoRK] Altera Announces Quad-Core 64-bit ARM Cortex-A53 for Stratix 10 SoCs

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Wed Oct 30 05:10:54 PDT 2013

(14 nm modern ARM + DSP + FPGA fabric)


Altera Announces Quad-Core 64-bit ARM Cortex-A53 for Stratix 10 SoCs

Manufactured on Intel’s 14 nm Tri-Gate Process, Altera Stratix® 10 SoCs Will
Deliver Industry’s Most Versatile Heterogeneous Computing Platform 
Santa Clara, Calif., ARM TechCon, October 29, 2013—Altera Corporation
(NASDAQ: ALTR) today announced that its Stratix 10 SoC devices, manufactured
on Intel’s 14 nm Tri-Gate process, will incorporate a high-performance,
quad-core 64-bit ARM Cortex™-A53 processor system, complementing the device’s
floating-point digital signal processing (DSP) blocks and high-performance
FPGA fabric. Coupled with Altera’s advanced system-level design tools,
including OpenCL, this versatile heterogeneous computing platform will offer
exceptional adaptability, performance, power efficiency and design
productivity for a broad range of applications, including data center
computing acceleration, radar systems and communications infrastructure.

The ARM Cortex-A53 processor, the first 64-bit processor used on a SoC FPGA,
is an ideal fit for use in Stratix 10 SoCs due to its performance, power
efficiency, data throughput and advanced features. The Cortex-A53 is among
the most power efficient of ARM’s application-class processors, and when
delivered on the 14 nm Tri-Gate process will achieve more than six times more
data throughput compared to today’s highest performing SoC FPGAs. The
Cortex-A53 also delivers important features, such as virtualization support,
256TB memory reach and error correction code (ECC) on L1 and L2 caches.
Furthermore, the Cortex-A53 core can run in 32-bit mode, which will run
Cortex-A9 operating systems and code unmodified, allowing a smooth upgrade
path from Altera’s 28 nm and 20 nm SoC FPGAs.

“ARM is pleased to see Altera adopting the lowest power 64-bit architecture
as an ideal complement to DSP and FPGA processing elements to create a
cutting-edge heterogeneous computing platform,” said Tom Cronk, executive
vice president and general manager, Processor Division, ARM. “The Cortex-A53
processor delivers industry-leading power efficiency and outstanding
performance levels, and it is supported by the ARM ecosystem and its
innovative software community.”

Leveraging Intel’s 14 nm Tri-Gate process and an enhanced high-performance
architecture, Altera Stratix 10 SoCs will have a programmable-logic
performance level of more than 1GHz; two times the core performance of
current high-end 28 nm FPGAs.

“High-end networking and communications infrastructure are rapidly migrating
toward heterogeneous computing architectures to achieve maximum system
performance and power efficiency,” said Linley Gwennap, principal analyst at
The Linley Group, a leading embedded research firm. “What Altera is doing
with its Stratix 10 SoC, both in terms of silicon convergence and high-level
design tool support, putsthe company at the forefront of delivering
heterogeneous computing platforms and positions them well to capitalize on
myriad opportunities.”

By standardizing on ARM processors across its three-generation SoC portfolio,
Altera will offer software compatibility and a common ARM ecosystem of tools
and operating system support. Embedded developers will be able to accelerate
debug cycles with Altera’s SoC Embedded Design Suite (EDS) featuring the ARM
Development Studio 5 (DS-5™) Altera® Edition toolkit, the industry’s only
FPGA-adaptive debug tool, as well as use Altera’s software development kit
(SDK) for OpenCL to create heterogeneous implementations using the OpenCL
high-level design language.

“With Stratix 10 SoCs, designers will have a versatile and powerful
heterogeneous compute platform enabling them to innovate and get to market
faster,” said Danny Biran, senior vice president, corporate strategy and
marketing at Altera. “This will be very exciting for customers as converged
silicon continues to be the best solution for complex, high-performance

About Altera

Altera® programmable solutions enable designers of electronic systems to
rapidly and cost effectively innovate, differentiate and win in their
markets. Altera offers FPGAs, SoCs, CPLDs, ASICs and complementary
technologies, such as power management, to provide high-value solutions to
customers worldwide. Follow Altera viaFacebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+
and RSS, and subscribe to product update emails and newsletters.  altera.com

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