The MathWorks recently announced that its Simulink Verification and Validation software automatically evaluates and verifies system models for compliance with DO-178B and IEC-61508 standards and MAAB modeling guidelines, which have been extensively adopted by international aerospace, automotive, and industrial equipment markets, among others. The new model-checking features for these important safety-critical standards extend the existing support available within Simulink Verification and Validation for customer-developed modeling guidelines.
CoFluent Design recently introduced version 2.2 of CoFluent Studio, which provides advanced capabilities for modeling wireless, telecommunications and networking systems. CoFluent Studio offers the ability to model a large number of simultaneous communications, such as numerous terminals connected to a network of bases stations, with the multiple instantiation of a unique model. Version 2.2 adds new modeling capabilities for dynamically managing functions. Management primitives include start, stop, suspend and resume of functions.
Dynamic function management enables modeling multiple use-cases that can be dynamically activated and stopped according to different scenarios. This corresponds to the evolution of mobile terminals and multimedia devices towards multiple dynamic functions and reconfigurable applications and platforms. Dynamic function management is necessary to efficiently and effectively represent dynamic thread management behavior, commonly found in electronic systems. It is especially adapted to model and simulate the lifecycle of threads and processes that are dynamically created and stopped in embedded real-time software applications.
More info: CoFluent Design
LabVIEW 8.5 Control Design and Simulation Module, from National Instruments (Nasdaq:NATI), is an extension of the LabVIEW graphical system design platform that helps engineers and scientists analyze open-loop model behavior, design closed-loop controllers, simulate systems and create real-time implementations. The latest version of the module introduces new design features such as analytical proportional integral derivative (PID) for improving system closed-loop stability and model predictive control to multivariable systems. The LabVIEW Control Design and Simulation Module also offers expanded support of LabVIEW MathScript with the addition of 18 new .m file functions to simplify such tasks as creating models, defining how models are connected and analyzing system stability.
A new time-saving feature in the LabVIEW Control Design and Simulation Module is analytical PID capability. Historically, engineers and scientists have identified the proper PID controller gain values by experimentally tuning their controllers. The analytical PID feature provides engineers and scientists with functions to find sets of PID gain values automatically for a given system model, making it easy for them to avoid undesired behavior at design time and improve system stability.
The latest version of the module also includes model predictive control (MPC), a popular algorithm used in industry to control multiple input, multiple output (MIMO) systems in complex process control applications. Engineers and scientists can use the MPC feature to construct controllers that adjust the control action before a change in the output setpoint actually occurs. This ability to predict model behavior combined with traditional feedback helps the controller make smoother adjustments that are closer to the optimal control action values.
The LabVIEW Control Design and Simulation Module easily integrates with NI software tools such as the LabVIEW Statechart Module for event-based control design or simulation and the LabVIEW Real-Time Module for rapid control prototyping and hardware-in-the-loop applications as well as system deployment. Engineers and scientists also can combine the module with the LabVIEW System Identification Toolkit and NI I/O devices to develop reliable measurement-based controllers.
More info: NI Embedded Control Engineering
Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE:A) recently released its latest Antenna Modeling Design System (AMDS). The full-wave 3-D electromagnetic (EM) modeling and simulation software contains a scripting feature for performance optimization and automation of complex designs such as patch array antennas, allowing designers to fine tune antennas for the best performance within electronic devices, such as handheld wireless cell phones. The Agilent AMDS is available now with prices starting at approximately $50,000.
AMDS is a full-wave, 3-D EM design, modeling and verification tool dedicated to antenna and antenna systems design. It meshes, simulates and optimizes an entire wireless device, together with its surrounding real-world environment, to analyze compliance standards such as HAC, SAR (Specific Absorption Rate), and antenna diversity and MIMO (Multiple-Input, Multiple Output). Simulating devices with AMDS can reduce design cycle time by up to 75 percent compared with that required by other types of EM simulators available today.
The new scripting capability in this fifth release of AMDS allows designers to write their own programs to automate element placement and incorporate mathematical functions to perform virtually any analysis on the antenna design before it is integrated into the complete mobile wireless device. Designers also can use equations to define the geometry of complex antennas (such as those with fractal and conformal surfaces) to optimize performance.
Agilent’s AMDS 3-D EM Feature Set
- Efficient importing of CAD data from product designers, reducing or eliminating EM design iterations
- Python scripting, allowing modeling and simulation of complex antenna systems such as patch array antennas
- Verification of antenna compliance with legal and operational standards such as SAR, HAC, Over-the-Air Performance and MIMO
- Optimization of MIMO performance by analyzing antenna placement and diversity for the entire physical wireless appliance
- Optimization of device performance, including modeling the interaction between a human’s head and the wireless device
Jazz Semiconductor® recently released the MOSVAR model libraries in its 0.13 and 0.18-micron AIMS technology platforms targeting wireless and other communication products. The new model improves simulation accuracy reducing product development time and is integrated as a standard component in Jazz’s Design Enablement platform that also includes the previously announced Jazz Inductor Toolbox (JIT) and X-Sigma statistical simulation suite. MOSVAR model libraries are currently available to Jazz customers for its 0.13 and 0.18-micron processes.
Acceleware Corp. (TSXV: AXE) and Synopsys, Inc. (NASDAQ: SNPS) have developed a new hardware solution that enables up to 20-times faster electromagnetic simulation of optoelectronic devices such as CMOS image sensors. The solution, which links Synopsys’ technology-leading TCAD Sentaurus(tm) Device simulation software and Acceleware’s ClusterInABox Quad Q30 workstation, enables an order-of-magnitude speed-up of the high accuracy finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) electromagnetic modeling algorithm used in Sentaurus Device. This performance increase allows engineers to leverage the rigor and accuracy of the FDTD method in designing and optimizing optoelectronic devices while shortening the product development cycle.
Due to the complex nature of optoelectronic devices, FDTD simulations typically require tens of hours to fully characterize a CMOS image sensor design in 3D. The new hardware acceleration solution reduces the FDTD simulation time by up to 20 times, allowing engineers to carry out more extensive simulation studies, reducing development costs and time. TCAD Sentaurus Device simulation software utilizes the ClusterInABox Quad Q30′s built-in NVIDIA graphics processing units (GPUs), which deliver up to two Teraflops of computational power, to significantly accelerate FDTD simulations of optoelectronic devices.
The Synopsys interface, TCAD Sentaurus(tm) Device EMW-X, is now available through TCAD Sentaurus(tm) Device EMW. The ClusterInABox Quad Q30 workstation is available for purchase directly from Acceleware.
Mentor Graphics Corp. (Nasdaq: MENT)recently the third generation of TestBench Xpress(tm) (TBX). TBX’s RTL-accurate virtual emulation capability eliminates the traditional barriers of adopting hardware in-circuit emulation for system-level integration. When used in conjunction with Mentor’s Veloce® family of hardware assisted verification products, TBX provides a software based, cost-effective and efficient way to perform hardware-software co-verification for embedded systems. The TBX is available either through purchase or time-based rental. In the US, the list price for TBX, which is an add-on option to Veloce, starts at $120,000.
CoFluent Reader, from CoFluent Design, is a model viewer and player. CoFluent Reader enables users to browse and view free graphical models captured with CoFluent Studio, which is an ESL visual architecture development environment. With CoFluent Reader, simulations of models can be played back for observing real-time results. CoFluent Reader is available for all users of CoFluent Studio v2.2.
Embedded IDE Link(tm) MU, from The MathWorks, is a new product for model-based design. Embedded IDE Link MU automatically deploys code generated from Simulink® models into the Green Hills® MULTI® integrated development environment (IDE), enabling seamless execution on a wide range of embedded microprocessors, including the Freescale(tm) Power Architecture(tm) (formerly called PowerPC®). Embedded IDE Link MU is available immediately and compatible with a wide range of microprocessors supported by MULTI, including the Freescale MPC5554 and MPC7447, NEC® V850, and Analog Devices® Blackfin®. U.S. list prices start at $2,000.
Applied Wave Research, Inc. (AWR®) recently released Microwave Office® 2007 design software simulation library. Microwave Office features NXP Semiconductor’s sixth-generation laterally-diffused metal oxide semiconductor (LDMOS) devices. The simulation library provides power amplifier (PA) and base station design engineers, as well as designers of worldwide interoperability for microwave access (WiMAX) and wireless broadcasting equipment with AWR- and NXP-proven large signal circuit simulation models.
NXP device models are available now and contain LDMOS devices from the WiMAX product portfolio. For active, licensed customers of AWR’s Microwave Office, the NXP LDMOS process technology simulation library is free. The library can be obtained by contacting NXP.