Lattice Offers Open IP Core License for LatticeMico8 Soft Microcontroller

7/27/2005 - Lattice Semiconductor Corporation (NASDAQ: LSCC) announced the immediate availability of its LatticeMico8TM, an 8-bit "soft" microcontroller core for the LatticeECPTM, LatticeECTMand LatticeXPTM families of Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs), as well as the recently released MachXOTM family of Crossover Programmable Logic Devices. In order to encourage user experimentation, development and contributions, Lattice is providing a new open intellectual property (IP) core license, the first such license offered by any FPGA supplier. The license applies many of the concepts of the successful open source movement to IP cores targeted for programmable logic applications.

"Eight-bit microcontrollers continue to play a major role in our customers' designs," said Stan Kopec, Lattice vice president of corporate marketing. "Our LatticeMico8 IP and its open intellectual property (IP) core license satisfy our customers' needs for a flexible, silicon-efficient solution that can be modified easily, when needed, to meet specific application needs."

Optimized for Lattice architectures, the LatticeMico8 microcontroller consumes less than 200 Look Up Tables (LUTs) in the smallest configuration, while maintaining a broad feature set, including:

In addition to the core design in Verilog, Lattice also provides an Assembler and an Instruction Set Simulator, both as source code. To showcase the features and capabilities of the LatticeMico8, a demo is available for download that allows users to implement a working design in less than 30 minutes on a Lattice evaluation board.

To further enhance flexibility, the design is parameterized to allow the easy implementation of four configurations, each optimized for different user needs:

  1. 16 registers, 16 bytes internal Scratch Pad RAM, no external Scratch Pad RAM
  2. 32 registers, 16 bytes internal Scratch Pad RAM, no external Scratch Pad RAM
  3. 32 registers, 32 bytes internal Scratch Pad RAM, no external Scratch Pad RAM
  4. 32 registers, 32 bytes internal Scratch Pad RAM, external Scratch Pad RAM

In addition to the LatticeMico8 microcontroller, Lattice provides other 8-bit microcontroller solutions through its ispLEVERCore partners, Cast Inc. and Digital Core Design, including the 8051 and PIC.

Open IP Core License
Unlike the free IP cores, also known as reference designs, typically available from FPGA vendors, the LatticeMico8 is licensed under a new and innovative Lattice open IP core license agreement, which can be downloaded from the Lattice website. The license agreement addresses specific issues associated with designs targeted toward programmable logic. By allowing users to modify the core and share their modifications, the open IP core license will foster user development and experimentation. Specifically, the license:

Additionally, both the Assembler and Instruction Set Simulator will be available as source under the standard GNU General Public License (GPL) agreement.

The LatticeMico8 reference design, which includes the core, user guide, all tools and demo examples, is available now for immediate download at no charge on the Lattice website:

About Lattice Semiconductor
Lattice Semiconductor Corporation provides the industry's broadest range of Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA) and Programmable Logic Devices (PLD), including Field Programmable System Chips (FPSC), Complex Programmable Logic Devices (CPLD), Programmable Mixed-Signal Products (ispPAC®) and Programmable Digital Interconnect Devices (ispGDX®). Lattice also offers industry leading SERDES products.

Lattice is "Bringing the Best Together" with comprehensive solutions for system design, including an unequaled portfolio of non-volatile programmable devices that deliver instant-on operation, security and "single chip solution" space savings. Lattice products are sold worldwide through an extensive network of independent sales representatives and distributors, primarily to OEM customers in communications, computing, industrial, consumer, automotive, medical and military end markets. Company headquarters are located at 5555 NE Moore Court, Hillsboro, Oregon 97124-6421, USA; telephone 503-268-8000, fax 503-268-8037. For more information about Lattice Semiconductor Corporation, visit

Lattice Semiconductor Corporation, Lattice (& design), L (& design), ispGDX, ispPAC, LatticeEC, LatticeECP, LatticeMico8, LatticeXP, MachXO and specific product designations are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Lattice Semiconductor Corporation or its subsidiaries in the United States and/or other countries.

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