Paper - Towards a FPGA-based Universal Link for LVDS Communications A First Approach Giancarlo Patio Luis Snchez James Lyke and Vctor Murray,^

Paper - Towards a FPGA-based Universal Link for LVDS...

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Towards a FPGA-based Universal Link for LVDS Communications: A First Approach Giancarlo Patiño * , Luis Sánchez * , James Lyke # and Víctor Murray *,^ * Department of Electrical Engineering, Universidad de Ingeniería y Tecnología – UTEC, Lima, Peru # U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA ^ Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA Abstract —We present a first approach to a FPGA-based universal link to handle different low-voltage differential signaling (LVDS) connections without changing the configuration of the transmitters or components. LVDS is one of the fastest and cheapest electrical digital signaling standards and, because of many electrical advantages compared to other standards , LVDS is used now by different applications from TV or LCD communications to spacecraft network communications like SpaceWire. However, the number of physical wires to have a full- duplex communication using LVDS is four and, in a network communication system, the total number of wires will be four multiplied by the number of individual connections. We present a first approach to a scalable hardware implementation to handle different LVDS connections using only one LVDS connection for a simplex system. The hardware presented here has been tested up to four input signals and up to 8 bits per package to transmit with promising results. In this first approach, we show the simulated results based on an Atlys board with a Spartan 6 FPGA. Keywords—LVDS, FPGA, multiplexing, universal link I. I NTRODUCTION Low-voltage differential signaling (LVDS) is an electrical digital signaling standard commonly used in consumer (TV, DVD, and LCD panels, for example), industrial, and aerospace (for example, SpaceWire, developed by the European space agency) applications [1, 2]. LVDS is a popular choice for physical layer transport of digital information due to its speed, low power consumption, and inherent simplicity [3]. The basic implementation of LVDS requires only two wires, upon which logical zero (‘0’) and one (‘1’) states are defined by small changes in voltage and current (e.g., 3.5mA and less than 2.5V) [4, 5] at a data transfer rate limited only ultimately by the performance of driver and receiver, and signal integrity of the transmission wiring. Owing to the speed and simplicity of the LVDS, it is possible in principle to use it as a transport medium for rendering other link technologies, such as the inter-integrated circuit (I2C) or serial peripheral interface (SPI). In this case, each link technology is converted with an adapter to LVDS, where the data in the original link is encoded on LVDS where it is transported to a reciprocal adapter that recovers the original data in the format of the original link. The information impressed on the LVDS link includes not only the original data, but also other auxiliary data associated with control and recovery. In principle, this concept could be extended to encode multiple copies of links on both sides of an adapter to include multiple copies of LVDS signals.
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