Tilera Ships the TILE64 Processor

Tilera launches the TILE64 processor, the first in a family of Tile Processor chips based on an architecture that can scale to hundreds and even thousands of cores. The TILE64 processor contains 64 full-featured, programmable cores - each capable of running Linux - and delivers 10X the performance and 30X the performance-per-watt of the Intel dual-core Xeon, and 40X the performance of the leading Texas Instruments DSP. Initial target markets for the TILE64 processor include the embedded networking and digital multimedia markets.

Tilera's new architecture eliminates the on-chip bus interconnect, a kind of centralized intersection that information must flow through between cores within the chip, or before it leaves the chip. As engineers have added more cores to chips, the bus has created an information traffic jam because packets from these cores all must travel to one central point, like a spoke-and-wheel traffic intersection in an old city.

Tilera's technology eliminates the bus by placing a communications switch on each processor core and arranging them in a grid fashion on the chip. This creates an efficient two-dimensional traffic system for packets, much like the layout of a modern city's streets. Tilera's implementation of this grid architecture is called iMesh, and it incorporates a number of patented innovations that enhance the performance and flexibility of the mesh. Because the aggregate bandwidth is orders of magnitude greater than a bus, and the distance between cores is shorter, the iMesh technology can be leveraged to create grids as large or small as an application requires, creating a "computing-by-the-yard" scalability, with breakthrough performance and ultra-low power consumption.

Each of the 64 cores on the TILE64 processor is capable of running its own operating system, such as Linux, and provides dramatically more compute performance than any other competing multicore device. Each core is a full-featured, general-purpose processor that includes L1 and L2 caches, as well as an innovative distributed L3 cache. The cores are overlaid with the iMesh network, which provides extremely low-latency, high bandwidth communications between the cores, memory and the I/O.

In order to minimize total system power, cost and real estate, the TILE64 processor integrates four DDR2 memory controllers and a complete array of high speed I/O interfaces, including two 10 Gbps XAUI, two 10 Gbps PCIe, two 1 Gbps Ethernet RGMII, and a programmable flexible I/O interface to support interfaces such as compact flash and disk drives.

The TILE64 processor is ideally suited for high performance embedded system markets. In the networking and telecommunications areas, the TILE64 processor is designed into switches and security appliances to provide unmatched performance of up to 20 Gbps of L4-L7 services. In the digital video and multimedia market, the TILE64 delivers an unprecedented two streams of broadcast-quality, high-definition H.264-encode capability in a single chip, and more than ten streams of encode for high-definition video conferencing applications.

The TILE64 processor is supported by the most robust set of software tools ever designed for multicore processor technology. The toolset is based on an industry-proven, open programming environment and adds advanced multicore debugging and profiling techniques to accelerate developer productivity and time to market.

The Tilera MDE includes a powerful Eclipse-based Integrated Development Environment, an ANSI standard C compiler, a full-system simulation model and a set of flexible command-line interfaces. The MDE also provides innovative, graphically driven tools for debugging and profiling multicore processors, and an application level library that provides lightweight socket-like stream communication mechanisms. The TILE64 processor supports this immense body of open source tools and applications with the standard SMP Linux programming environment.

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