Servicio de Información Comunitario sobre Investigación y Desarrollo - CORDIS

New design process (component-based hardware/software co-design)

Component-based hardware/software co-design (CBHSCD) is a new design process for the design of embedded systems using component-based methods. A typical embedded system consists of both hardware and software components; therefore this methodology has to support them both. Moreover, the design of embedded systems is typically constrained in several non-functional aspects: the design has to respect costs and timing requirements such as hard real-time constraints.

In order to cope with the complexity of the designed system, the design methodology has to allow the designer to work at a sufficiently high level of abstraction. This means that the designer works with behavioural components, focusing mainly on functionality, while implementation issues are handled automatically. This also implies that components are handled regardless of whether they are implemented in hardware or in software. Moreover, the methodology has to be supported by powerful tools that provide a high-level view on the design while hiding and automating lower-level implementation issues.

CBHSCD defines a component as a functional unit. The composition of components is based on their functionality. This functionality is captured by the interface of the component, which is completely decoupled from its implementation. It is also possible to have more than one implementation for the same interface. What is more, it is possible that there is a hardware implementation and a software implementation for the same interface. An important feature is hardware/software transparency, which means that a change between the two implementations is transparent to the rest of the system.

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Budapest University of Technology and Economics
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