From Altera: lowest power FPGAs are also among most secure

New launch,  Cyclone III LS, targets mission critical and military markets

 Field programmable gate array ( FPGA)  leader Altera has launched what is arguably the first industry combo of extremely low power operation and significant security features.  India-based developers for the global and domestic mission critical market are being offered the Altera Cyclone III LS FPGA this week,  as part of a global release. 

The 60 nanometer   offering  includes 200,000 logic elements and 396 multipliers and asks for  just a quarter watt of static power. It comes with anti tamper features a 256 bit AES encryption for design security; port protection to prevent rivals from attempting to reverse –engineer your product and a feature called design  separation:  helping creating multiple isolated functional blocks which can also be harnessed to create redundancy and back up in case of a single point failure.

Applications envisaged include cryptography and intense image processing for nigh vision systems. Another archetypal application would be software defined radio, explained  Susan Chang, Altera’s Hong Kong based Marketing Manager for the Asia Pac region during a conference call, Monday. 

The FPGAs USP of significant Intellectual Property (IP)  Protection features is likely to appeal to India’s large number of   fables  designers who serve international customers in hotly competitive arenas.


field-programmable gate array (FPGA) is a semiconductor device that can be configured by the customer or designer after manufacturing—hence the name "field-programmable". FPGAs are programmed using a logic circuit diagram or a source code in a hardware description language (HDL) to specify how the chip will work. They can be used to implement any logical function that an application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) could perform, but the ability to update the functionality after shipping offers advantages for many applications. FPGAs contain programmable logic components called "logic blocks", and a hierarchy of reconfigurable interconnects that allow the blocks to be "wired together"—somewhat like a one-chip programmable breadboard. Logic blocks can be configured to perform complex combinational functions, or merely simple logic gates like AND and XOR. In most FPGAs, the logic blocks also include memory elements, which may be simple flip-flops or more complete blocks of memory. ( from Wikipedia)