Arm Cortex-A65AE Targets Safety-Critical Automotive, Aviation, and Industrial Automation Applications

Arm introduced their first “Automotive Enhanced” processor with Cortex-A76AE last September. The processor targets autonomous driving applications, and comes with extra safety features such Dual Core Lock-Step (DCLS) running the same code on two different cores to continuously check the execution result is the same on both.

The company has now unveiled a second AE core with Cortex-A65AE, which Arm claims is the first multithreaded Automotive Enhanced Cortex-A CPU technology to deliver the highest safety levels with Dual Core Lock-Step (DCLS).

Cortex-A65AE

Arm Cortex-A65AE specifications:

  • Architecture – Armv8-A (Harvard)
  • Extensions – Armv8.1, Armv8.2, Cryptography, RAS, and Armv8.3 (LDAPR instructions only)
  • ISA support – A64
  • Microarchitecture
    • Out-of-order Pipeline
    • Superscalar
    • NEON/Floating Point Unit
    • Optional Cryptography Unit
    • Max number of CPUs in cluster – Eight
    • Physical Addressing (PA) – 44-bit
    • Dual Core Lock-Step
  • Memory system and external interfaces
    • L1 I-Cache / D-Cache – 16KB to 64KB
    • L2 Cache – 64KB to 256KB
    • L3 Cache – Optional, 512KB to 4MB
    • ECC Support, LPAE  support
      Yes
    • Bus interfaces – AMBA ACE or CHI
    • Optional ACP
    • Optional Peripheral Port
  • Other
    • Functional Safety Support – ASIL D diagnostics
    • Security – TrustZone
    • Interrupts – GIC interface, GICv4
    • Generic Armv8-A timer
    • PMUv3
    • Debug – Armv8-A (plus Armv8.2-A extensions)
    • CoreSight – CoreSightv3
    • Embedded Trace Macrocell – ETMv4.2 (instruction trace)

The main benefit include high throughput performance with dual-threaded, out-of-order execution, split-Lock capability which offers the flexibility to operate in two modes: split mode for performance and lock mode for safety, and fault-tolerant operation in lock mode with DCLS. The processor is suitable for automotive, industrial automation, and aviation applications.

Compared to Cortex-A53, Arm Cortex A65AE delivers 70% improved integer performance per core, 3.5x higher memory throughput for memory intensive automotive workloads, and over 6x higher read bandwidth on low-latency ACP for closely-coupled accelerators. There’s no word whether a consumer Cortex-A65 will also become available.

More details can be found on the product page, and the developer website.

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