SpaceFibre Interface and Routing Switch IP Cores 947.44 KB
SpaceFibre is a technology specifically designed for use onboard spacecraft that provides point to point and networked interconnections at Gigabit rates with Quality of Service (QoS) and Fault Detection, Isolation and Recovery (FDIR). SpaceFibre is backwards compatible with SpaceWire, allowing existing SpaceWire equipment to be incorporated into a SpaceFibre network without modifications at packet level.
In this work we present the family of SpaceFibre IP Cores developed by STAR-Dundee. It is composed of three different IPs: the Single-Lane Interface, the Multi-Lane Interface and the Routing Switch. The IP Cores are fully compliant with the SpaceFibre standard and have been carefully implemented to optimise their performance and minimise their footprint on radiation-tolerant FPGAs (e.g. RTAX, RTG4, BRAVE or Virtex-5QV) and ASICs. They have also been validated on commercial FPGAs (e.g. Igloo2, Spartan, Virtex, Kintex, etc.).
The Single-Lane Interface IP offers in a compact design (~3% of the RTG4/Virtex-5QV) the maximum possible line rates provided by embedded or external transceivers (i.e. 3.125 Gbps in RTG4, 4.25 Gbps in Virtex-5QV and 2.5 Gbps in RTAX using the TLK2711-SP transceiver). The Multi-Lane Interface IP allows much higher data rates and adds all the advantages of combining multiple lanes without multiplying the resources required (e.g. ~5-6% for 3 lanes in RTG4/Virtex-5QV). The SpaceFibre Routing Switch IP Core is a scalable, fully configurable non-blocking router, allowing to select the number of virtual channels and ports. This routing switch implements path and logical addressing, group adaptive routing, virtual networks, time distribution and message broadcast. A router of 4 ports each with 4 virtual channels typically requires less than 20% of an RTG4, including the SpFi interfaces.
The IP Cores presented in this article provide the building blocks for creating the next generation of onboard networks with in-built QoS and FDIR mechanisms, and are currently being implemented in several missions and products all over the world. We analyse the performance and capabilities of the different IP Cores, and discuss the resources required depending on several parameters such as the number lanes, ports, virtual channels and virtual networks.