Suhel Dhanani of Altera (www.altera.com) cites three examples of potential new system designs that are now possible with the wide availability of system-on-chip FPGAs.
One example is a drive on a chip that integrates the drive control loop with communication functions, custom interfaces for encoders, analog-to-digital converters and, potentially, even IGBTs.
Another possibility involves embedding a programmable industrial Ethernet function within the system-on-chip to accommodate any protocol. This removes the need to add a special communications board and a special communications ASIC.
A third option is to enable localizedcontrollers in areas where latency iscritical. Here, system-on-chip FPGAs playa role in partnership with the main PLCcontrol processor, such as an Intelmicroprocessor unit.
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