Programmer and Starter Kit support FPGAs.

Press Release Summary:

FlashPro3 Device Programmer supports company's flash-based ProASIC3 and ProASIC3E FPGA families. Compatible with high-speed USB 2.0 specification, Kit allows engineers to design and program nonvolatile devices as well as examine secure in-system programmability using AES encryption. Also, by connecting programmer to FPGAs already soldered on board using JTAG 10-pin interface, FlashPro3 may be used for in-system programming of customer boards.

Original Press Release:

Actel to Offer Complete Hardware Support for Industry's Lowest Cost FPGA Solutions with New Programmer and Starter Kit

Development Solutions Enable Examination of ISP and Security Features of New Flash-Based ProASIC3/E FPGAs

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Jan. 24 -- Actel Corporation (NASDAQ:ACTL) today announced a new low-cost device programmer and starter kit to support its new flash-based ProASIC3 and ProASIC3E field-programmable gate array (FPGA) families, also introduced today (See separate press release entitled, "Actel's Third-Generation Flash-Based Devices Set the Bar at $1.50 as Industry's Lowest Cost FPGA Solution").

Compatible with the high-speed USB 2.0 specification, the new portable FlashPro3 programmer offers low-cost, full-speed programming for the devices. Actel's new ProASIC3 Starter Kit allows designers to examine, design and program the nonvolatile ProASIC3/E devices, the industry's lowest-cost FPGA solutions. Specifically designed to support the single-chip ProASIC3/E devices, the FlashPro3 programmer and ProASIC3 Starter Kit allow exploration of the unique architectural features of the ProASIC3/E devices. Using these new tools, engineers can examine secure in-system programmability (ISP) using AES encryption.

"With a complete, low-cost hardware support package for our third-generation, flash-based ProASIC3/E devices, our customers can easily begin creating designs for their cost-sensitive applications," said Saloni Howard-Sarin, director of antifuse and tools marketing at Actel. "Our new USB 2.0-compliant FlashPro3 programmer will enable Actel's customers to program their ProASIC3 solutions in less than 30 seconds while our new low-cost ProASIC3 Starter Kit will allow users to quickly realize the unique advantages offered by our new nonvolatile FPGAs, including ISP and optimized security features."

Cost-Effective Programming with FlashPro3 Programmer

For customer-designed boards that include more than one ProASIC3 device, FlashPro3 can program or test a daisy chain of FPGAs using Actel's ChainBuilder software. Specific FPGAs can also be selected from among other FPGAs in the chain, which may contain both Actel and non-Actel devices, to be programmed individually or automatically in sequence, via a common header attached to the JTAG chain. Likewise, several FlashPro3 programmers may be connected to one PC via a high-speed USB hub to allow up to 16 devices or boards to be programmed in parallel, each at full-speed, delivering a substantial reduction in programming time over previous systems. Additionally, by connecting the programmer to FPGAs already soldered on a board using the industry-standard JTAG 10-pin interface, FlashPro3 may be used for in-system programming of customer boards.

The FlashPro3 programmer is supported by Actel's FlashPro software. FlashPro3 supports the Standard Test and Programming Language (STAPL), making the device independent of any specific programming algorithms. The algorithm is embedded into the programming file, independent of the FlashPro software, enabling the same programming file to be used with other STAPL-compliant programmers. ProASIC3/E devices are compliant with IEEE1532-based device programming, which uses the IEEE1149 JTAG standard as the physical protocol. Because programming data and algorithms are separate in IEEE1532-based programming, one can be modified without affecting the other, thereby easing upgrading.

Comprehensive Low-Cost ProASIC3 Starter Kit

The ProASIC3 Starter Kit includes everything a designer needs to quickly evaluate, design and program the new ProASIC3/E devices. The ProASIC3/E Starter Kit consists of an evaluation board with a ProASIC3E device, Actel's Libero Gold 6.1 Integrated Design Environment, the FlashPro3 programmer, USB cable, programming cable, power supply, tutorials and support documentation.

About ProASIC3

The industry's lowest cost FPGA solution, Actel's new live at power-up, low-power, highly secure ProASIC3/E FGPAs deliver 64-bit, 66 MHz PCI performance and are the industry's first FPGAs with on-chip user flash memory. The 10 devices in the ProASIC3/E families, ranging in density from 30,000 to 3-million system gates, deliver technology-leading integrated secure ISP.

Pricing and Availability

A standalone version of the low-cost FlashPro3 programmer is available now for use with Actel's ProASIC3/E devices. Pricing for the new programmer begins at $125. The new low-cost ProASIC3 Starter Kit will be available in Q2 2005 for $249. For further information about pricing and availability, please contact Actel.

About Actel

Actel Corporation is a supplier of innovative programmable logic solutions, including field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) based on antifuse and flash technologies, high-performance intellectual property (IP) cores, software development tools and design services, targeted for the high-speed communications, application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) replacement and radiation-tolerant markets. Founded in 1985, Actel employs more than 500 people worldwide. The Company is traded on the Nasdaq National Market under the symbol ACTL and is headquartered at 2061 Stierlin Court, Mountain View, Calif., 94043-4655. Telephone: 888-99-ACTEL (992-2835). Internet:

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