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).


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
    • 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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3 Replies to “Arm Cortex-A65AE Targets Safety-Critical Automotive, Aviation, and Industrial Automation Applications”

  1. Interesting…
    When I was working in avionics i heard there are still many mc68000 and other CPUs from that era, because those are the last CPUs that had their masks still completely verified. So not sure if those new CPUs will finally have the potential to retire those dinosaurs of their time.

  2. Pretty late to the game, I’d say. Infineon’s Tricore has already become the standard for automotive safety applications.

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