In-situ FPGA debug driven by on-board microcontroller

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Often we are faced with the situation that the behavior of a circuit changes in an unpredictable way when chassis cover is attached or the system is not easily accessible. For instance, in a deployed environment, such as space, hardware can malfunction in unpredictable ways. What can a designer do to ascertain the cause of the problem? Register interrogations only go so far, and sometimes the problem being debugged is register transactions themselves, or the problem lies in FPGA programming. This work provides a solution to this; namely, the ability to drive a JTAG chain via an on-board microcontroller and ... continued below

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Baker, Zachary Kent January 1, 2009.

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Often we are faced with the situation that the behavior of a circuit changes in an unpredictable way when chassis cover is attached or the system is not easily accessible. For instance, in a deployed environment, such as space, hardware can malfunction in unpredictable ways. What can a designer do to ascertain the cause of the problem? Register interrogations only go so far, and sometimes the problem being debugged is register transactions themselves, or the problem lies in FPGA programming. This work provides a solution to this; namely, the ability to drive a JTAG chain via an on-board microcontroller and use a simple clone of the Xilinx Chipscope core without a Xilinx JTAG cable or any external interfaces required. We have demonstrated the functionality of the prototype system using a Xilinx Spartan 3E FPGA and a Microchip PIC18j2550 microcontroller. This paper will discuss the implementation details as well as present case studies describing how the tools have aided satellite hardware development.

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  • Report No.: LA-UR-09-00200
  • Report No.: LA-UR-09-200
  • Grant Number: AC52-06NA25396
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 956498
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc930322

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • January 1, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

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  • Dec. 12, 2016, 12:15 p.m.

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Baker, Zachary Kent. In-situ FPGA debug driven by on-board microcontroller, article, January 1, 2009; [New Mexico]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc930322/: accessed August 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.