Anadigm ships dynamically reconfigurable, field-programmable analog array

By Control Engineering Staff September 5, 2002

Campbell, CA— Anadigm began shipping its new AN220E04 on Aug. 30. The firm reports that AN220E04 is the first field-programmable analog array (FPAA) that can be dynamically reconfigured to allow real-time control, updating and manipulation of analog functions by microprocessors in electronic systems. Anadigm’s proprietary FPAA technology is an analog equivalent to FPGA, which allows complex analog signal conditioning and processing functions to be integrated in pretested, off-the-shelf devices.

AN220E04 debuts as the silicon component of Anadigmvortex, a second-generation product family that combines an EDA tool; configurable analog modules (CAMs); and programmable silicon, which Analog says reduces time required for analog design implementations from months to minutes.

Besides enabling a short analog design and implementation cycle, AN220E04 can be re-configured in-system by the designer or on the fly by a microprocessor. A single AN220E04 can be programmed to implement multiple analog functions and/or adapt on the fly to maintain precision operation despite system degradation and aging.

AN220E04 will be used to replace discrete components and analog ASIC/ASSP devices for signal conditioning, filtering, data acquisition, closed-loop control, and other analog applications in many industrial, automotive, medical and communication applications, as well as in automatic test equipment and instrumentation systems.

Based on fully differential switched capacitor technology with an analog switch fabric, second-generation AN220E04 has been redesigned to boost device functionality and performance. Compared with Anadigm’s first-generation FPAAs, AN220E04 architecture provides a significantly improved signal-to-noise ratio, as well as higher bandwidth. A successive approximation register-based A/D converter can be combined with an on-board look-up table to provide advanced analog functions.

Anadigm adds that, until now, analog functionality in a system could be changed only by developing a new system board with new discrete values. Anadigmvortex allows these functions to interact with other parts of the system via software, putting analog under the control of the system processor. The firm says resulting benefits to manufacturers are numerous. Examples include the ability to adapt the system for sensor degradation, laser aging, or changing customer requirements; increased system functionality; and the ability to improve accuracy in end products.

‘Our first-generation FPAAs created an entirely new paradigm for analog design by allowing even non-specialists to design and implement complex analog circuits in a fraction of the time required by designers using discrete components or analog ASICs,’ says Mike Kay, Anadigm’s president and ceo. ‘With the dynamic reconfigurability introduced by Anadigmvortex, the comparative benefits of FPAAs become even more dramatic, not only for the process of analog design, but as a redefinition of the way analog will work and be controlled in the software-centric systems of today and tomorrow.’

Control Engineering Daily News DeskJim Montague, news