Author: Field, A.
Paper Title Page
TUBAUST01 FPGA-based Hardware Instrumentation Development on MAST 544
  • B.K. Huang, R.M. Myers, R.M. Sharples
    Durham University, Durham, United Kingdom
  • N. Ben Ayed, G. Cunningham, A. Field, S. Khilar, G.A. Naylor
    CCFE, Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom
  • R.G.L. Vann
    York University, Heslington, York, United Kingdom
  Funding: This work was part-funded by the RCUK Energy Programme under grant EP/I501045 and the European Communities under the Contract of Association between EURATOM and CCFE.
On MAST (the Mega Amp Spherical Tokamak) at Culham Centre for Fusion Energy some key control systems and diagnostics are being developed and upgraded with FPGA hardware. FPGAs provide many benefits including low latency and real-time digital signal processing. FPGAs blur the line between hardware and software. They are programmed (in VHDL/Verilog language) using software, but once configured act deterministically as hardware. The challenges in developing a system are keeping up-front and maintenance costs low, and prolonging the life of the device as much as possible. We accomplish lower costs by using industry standards such as the FMC (FPGA Mezzanine Card) Vita 57 standard and by using COTS (Commercial Off The Shelf) components which are significantly less costly than developing them in-house. We extend the device operational lifetime by using a flexible FPGA architecture and industry standard interfaces. We discuss the implementation of FPGA control on two specific systems on MAST. The Vertical Stabilisation system comprises of a 1U form factor box with 1 SP601 Spartan6 FPGA board, 10/100 Ethernet access, Microblaze processor, 24-bit σ delta ADS1672 ADC and ATX power supply for remote power cycling. The Electron Bernstein Wave system comprises of a 4U form factor box with 2 ML605 Virtex6 FPGA boards, Gigabit Ethernet, Microblaze processor and 2 FMC108 ADC providing 16 Channels with 14-bit at 250MHz. AXI4 is used as the on chip bus between firmware components to allow very high data rates which has been tested at over 40Gbps streaming into a 2GB DDR3 SODIMM.
slides icon Slides TUBAUST01 [8.172 MB]