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Electronics Production | June 09, 2006

Actel´s flash-based FPGA´s selected by E INK

Actel Corporation announced that its flash-based ProASIC3 field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) have been selected by E Ink Corporation for use within its next-generation electronic paper display controllers.

Providing the flexibility of re-programmability in a low-cost, low-power, small-footprint device, Actel's single-chip ProASIC3 FPGA will transfer image information from the host processor to active matrix electronic paper displays. E Ink's technology will benefit multiple portable end applications, including consumer handhelds, PDAs, E-books and mobile handsets. E Ink's electronic paper display technology possesses a paper-like high contrast appearance, ultra-low power consumption and a thin, light form. It provides the viewer the experience of reading from paper, while having the power of updateable information and memory retention even when the display's power is turned off. Key to the design of E Ink's electronic paper display is low power consumption, as battery-operated mobile devices make greatest use of the technology. “Actel's ProASIC3 FPGA provided E Ink with the flexibility of re-programmability in a small-footprint, single chip device,” said Holly Gates, lead engineer at E Ink. “Further, the live at power-up nature of the device allowed us to meet product specifications and maximise battery life as compared to other FPGA alternatives considered for our electronic paper display technology.” “E Ink's deployment of Actel's single-chip, low-cost ProASIC3 devices in its cutting-edge electronic paper display technology underscores the advantages that nonvolatile FPGAs provide for today's portable applications,” said Martin Mason, director of silicon product marketing at Actel. “Providing low power, small footprint and reduced cost on a single chip, Actel's FPGAs uniquely possess a mix of ASIC-like attributes in a reprogrammable FPGA - features highly sought after by the ever-growing community of portable electronics designers.”
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