A high level of deterministic fast response is required for functional
safety needed in many of the latest automotive, industrial, aerospace, and
medical designs, where there is a definite push for more autonomy in electronic
systems. The new ARM Cortex-R52 core supports an adaptable memory architecture
with deterministic tightly coupled memories integrated within the processor. Along
with a low latency peripheral port, this enables assured response latencies. The
core meets the highest functional safety standards and is said to provide the
robust, real-time performance needed for next generation autonomous systems.

The ARM Cortex-R52 processor IP was designed from
the ground up to address functional safety in systems that must comply
with ISO 26262 ASIL D and IEC 61508 SIL 3 – the most stringent safety standards
in the automotive and industrial markets. The IP offers hardware-enforced
separation of software tasks to ensure safety-critical code is fully isolated.
This allows the hardware to be managed by a software hypervisor policing the
execution and resourcing of tasks. By enabling the precise and robust
separation of software, the Cortex-R52 decreases the amount of code that must be
safety-certified, thus speeding up software integration, maintenance, and
validation. The processor also deals with the increased software complexity involved
with determinism and fast context switching that real-time systems demand.

The processor IP has an 8-stage pipeline with instruction
pre-fetch, branch prediction, superscalar in order execution, and parallel
execution paths for load-store, MAC, shift-ALU, divide and floating-point. It also
features up to quad-core multi-processor configurations or eight logical cores in
dual core lock step (DCLS) configuration.


The core has a licensable extended safety package that is externally
certified and high fault coverage core self-test library for boot time and periodic
run time execution. It supports up to three optional tightly-coupled memory
interfaces, each up to 1 Mbyte. The processor includes
low-latency interrupt technology that allows long multi-cycle instructions to
be interrupted and restarted. Deferral of lengthy memory accesses occurs in
certain circumstances. It is configurable to support from 32 to 960 interrupts,
including software generated interrupts which can be routed between multiple

There is support for
level 1 and 2 memory protection units and single-bit error correction and
double-bit error detection for cache and TCM memories. There is also a 128-bit
AMBA AXI-4 bus master for Level-2 memory and peripheral access, with ECC
protection. Two floating point units can be implemented. A per-core dedicated
128-bit AMBA AXI port can integrate latency-sensitive flash memory tightly to a
specific core, with configurable ECC protection. The Cortex-R52 includes a
CoreSight Embedded Trace Module that can be configured per core or shared
between the cores in the cluster.