Section: New Results

ReCoMARTE: A Marte Based Profile for Dynamic Reconfigurable Systems Modeling

During the last decade, DPR has been widely studied as a research topic. Despite its intuitive appeal, the technique had eluded widespread adoption, particularly in industrial applications. This is due to the complexities of the provided design flow and the in-depth knowledge of many low level aspects of FPGA technologies used to implement DPR systems. The aim of our current work is to propose a methodology in order to allow us to introduce PDR in MARTE for modeling all types of FPGAs supporting our chosen PDR flow. Afterwards, using the MDE model transformations, the design flow can be used to bridge the gap between high level specifications and low implementation details to finally generate files used by the Xilinx EDK design flow for implementing the top-level SoC description of the system. Indeed, in its current version, UML MARTE profile lacks dynamic reconfiguration concepts and requirements for the reconfiguration at different abstraction levels. We have concentrated our efforts in the creation of the structural description of the system that is used as an input to the DPR design flow to facilitate the design entry phase of the DPR design flow. Therefore, we defined an extended version of MARTE called RecoMARTE (Reconfigurable MARTE) [16] model these concepts mainly at:

  • Application level: For reconfigurable applications combining control and data processing, it is very difficult, even impossible to use the MARTE profile for their specification. Non-functional properties such as control concepts are induced by different configurations or running modes of the system and allow the description of more complex behaviours. We recommend a set of extensions to a MARTE profile. We also focus on modelling heterogeneous reconfigurable components, and address the problem of constraints specification for verification issue.

  • Control mechanism: We define necessary requirements for the reconfiguration control mechanism in order to manage reconfiguration at every design level. In addition, our solution allows to describe global contracts and constraints for combining automata. Our modeled reconfiguration controller will be then synthesized using Discrete Controller Synthesis formal technique (collaboration work)I n order to always provide a correct configuration to the system, with respect to constraints specified by the designer

  • Deployment level: Our design methodology using RecoMARTE enables the deployment, parameterization and integration of hardware IPs into SoC platform at multiple levels of abstraction. We have introduced IP deployment capabilities in MARTE, which aim at facilitating the import of selected low-level features into the high-level models, their modification, and the creation of an IP-XACT design description that is used to parameterize and integrate the underlying IP descriptions.

  • Physical level: introduced extensions in MARTE provide some facilities to allow modeling physical architecture of a chosen FPGA. Our solution allows to carry out the physical placement of static and reconfigurable areas on the platform. This task is done through ranges in terms of physical resources, with respect to placement constraints such as consumed resources.