Vice President, Processing Solutions
1. How does Xilinx see India both as a design country for
programmable logic chips as well as a market for the
consumption of programmable logic?
Xilinx strongly believes in India’s potential as a design
country for programmable chips. To that extent we have
invested significantly in our Hyderabad site, which has more
than doubled since 2009. In India our engineers are involved
in the design of programmable logic, software tools used to
program these devices and in IP development for these
products. India has a strong pool of talented engineers coming
both from its leading engineering colleges as well as those
trained in semiconductor companies in India. We are also
seeing significant growth in the consumption of our
programmable devices in the Indian market.
2. Please comment on the latest technologies being
developed by Xilinx. Is there any input from the Indian R&D
team? Which are the futuristic technologies on the anvil?
Our engineers in India are involved in the development of all
our leading edge technologies. They are involved in the
development of our 7-series products that were announced
recently. They have a very significant role in the development
of our EPP based products. More than half our team for the
Extensible Processing Platform (EPP) development is based in
India. Some aspects of the EPP are entirely designed and
verified in India and the India team is driving the
methodology used here. Our India team also has sole ownership
and development responsibility for significant aspects of our
software tool suite.
3. What is the reason behind FPGAs and PLDs gaining more
As ASIC development costs continue to surge and time to market
becomes even more critical, FPGA’s and PLD’s start to gain
popularity. The cost of ASIC development in leading edge nodes
such as 28nm is prohibitive and very few companies can afford
to build semiconductor solutions from the ground up at these
advanced nodes. In addition the complexity associated with
ASIC design in these advanced nodes is also very significant.
Not only do companies developing these need deep pockets for
the associated manufacturing costs, they need to invest in a
significant amount of very expensive EDA tools designed to
deal with these products, they need large teams trained in the
sophisticated aspects of deep submicron designs. FPGA’s
provide an attractive alternative, because they do not have
any of this overhead associated with them. In addition because
of Moore’s law, the capacity of FPGA’s continues to grow where
it can now subsume levels of functionality not previously
4. What is your view on IP in FPGAs?
At Xilinx we find the demand for high quality, proven IP for
FPGA’s is on the rise, as more and more people look to FPGA’s
to implement system solutions. The FPGA IP ecosystem is in the
early stages of development. In the past FPGA manufacturers
were the sole providers of FPGA targeted IP. That is slowly
but surely starting to change. At Xilinx we would like to
encourage the growth of a robust third party ecosystem. To
that extent we have established the multi-tiered Xilinx
Alliance Program to encourage the growth of the IP ecosystem
for FPGA’s. Xilinx carefully selects highly qualified IP
vendors for participation in this program and certifies their
offerings to instill customer confidence in these products.
Profile : Vidya Rajagopalan is vice president of
Processing Solutions and Global Verification for the
Programmable Platforms group at Xilinx, with responsibility
for development and delivery of the company’s Extensible
Processing Platform and next-generation processing solutions.
Rajagopalan joined Xilinx in 2009 with more than 20 years of
experience in the architecture design and implementation of
processors and processor based systems. At MIPS, she led the
development of MIPS Technologies’ MIPS 74K processor core
family from concept to production, including assembling and
managing the design team.
Rajagopalan has held management and technical leadership
positions at MIPS Technologies, SGI, Quantum Effect Design,
and Digital Equipment Corp. At Digital Equipment Corp. she was
actively involved in the architecture and development of
multiple generations of Digital’s Alpha line of processors,
recognized for pushing the envelope for processor performance
and frequency in their time.
Rajagopalan has a bachelor's of engineering from VNIT
(National Institute of Technology), and a masters of science
in electrical engineering from the University of Maryland