Pentek enhances Navigator Design Suite for the RFSoC Quartz Architecture

June 4, 2019
Pentek debuts new enhancements at the International Microwave Symposium.

BOSTON - Pentek, Inc., of Upper Saddle River, NJ, today introduced several enhancements to its Navigator Design Suite for the Xilinx Zynq UltraScale+ RFSoC at the International Microwave Symposium in Boston, Mass. This new IP expands Pentek’s existing IP library to over 140 cores for FPGA development on its Quartz Architecture platform. Pentek’s Navigator Design Suite includes the Navigator FDK (FPGA Design Kit) for integrating custom IP into Pentek factory-shipped designs and the Navigator BSP (Board Support Package) for creating host applications.

Pentek’s family of Quartz products based on Xilinx’s RFSoC deliver functionality in a single board. Both Navigator FDK and BSP have been extended to support this functionality.

Starting with the FDK, new cores support the RFSoC on-chip A/D and D/A converters with the following new features. Data acquisition and waveform generator cores have been updated that include support for VITA 49.2 VITA Radio Transport (VRT) packet formatting. A new optimized x16 decimation core extends the range of the built-in RFSoC decimation. Pentek’s Smart A/D Calibration feature adds hardware, FPGA IP and software to make Xilinx’s calibration circuitry across diverse operational scenarios. The programmable signal synthesizer core now includes a programmable frequency sweep generator, suitable for generating radar chirp pulse waveforms. These new cores for Quartz support operation of all eight RFSoC A/D and D/A converters simultaneously.

In addition to data converter support, the Navigator core library now includes 100 gigabit Ethernet UDP engines, each moving data in both directions at 12 GBytes/sec through on-board optical interfaces. The Quartz board's optical interface supports up to two 100 gigabit Ethernet connections providing a total transfer rate of more than 24 GBytes/sec.

The Navigator BSP adds new software resources for RFSoC ARM processors running Xilinx’s PetaLinux. In addition to drivers, software modules and example programs, the BSP now includes an API command processor application so that Quartz boards can be controlled by high-level commands received through the board’s PCIe or 1 GigE interfaces. Pentek provides a library of API commands for all the most commonly used functions. As with all Pentek BSPs, full source code for the API command processor application is provided so developers can expand or modify the API set as needed for custom functions.

The Navigator BSP includes new example programs for using the full set of evolving hardware features and IP core functions. Each example can be used as is, or its source code can be modified down to the lowest levels for custom operation. The Navigator BSP is available for Windows and Linux operating systems.

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