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(System)Verilog to Chisel Translation for Faster Hardware Design

Auteur(s) : J. Bruant, P.-H Horrein, O. Muller, T. Groleat, F. Pétrot

Doc. Source: 31th International Symposium on Rapid System Prototyping (RSP 2020)

Bringing agility to hardware developments has been a long-running goal for hardware communities struggling with limitations of current hardware description languages such as (System)Verilog or VHDL. The numerous recent Hardware Construction Languages such as Chisel are providing enhanced ways to design complex hardware architectures with notable academic and industrial successes. While the latter environments are now mature and perfectly suited for brand new projects, migrating partially or entirely existing Verilog code-base proves to be a challenging and very time-consuming process. Successful migrations need to be able to leverage finely tuned existing hardware descriptions as a basis to build complex systems through simple iterations. This article introduces sv2chisel, an open-source automated (System)Verilog to Chisel translator as entry point for this iterative migration processes. Our tool achieved the proper translation, with on-par resource usage of a real-world production FPGA design at OVHcloud as well as two independent open-source Verilog projects: a MIPS core and the size-optimized 32-bit RISC-V core PicoRV32.