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Successful conclusion to EU’s three-year TULIPP project for embedded image processing and vision applications


Delivers comprehensive reference platform for vision-based system designers comprising full development kit and ‘real-world’ Use Cases


he TULIPP (Towards Ubiquitous Low-power Image Processing Platforms) Consortium has announced a highly successful conclusion to the EU’s three- year project. Beginning in January 2016, the TULIPP project targeted the improved development of high performance, energy efficient systems for the growing range of complex, vision- based image processing applications. The TULIPP project was funded with nearly 4 million from Horizon 2020, the European Union’s biggest research and innovation programme to date.


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The conclusion of the TULIPP project sees the release of a comprehensive reference platform for vision-based embedded system designers, enabling computer vision product designers to readily address the combined challenges of low power, low latency, high performance and real-time image processing design constraints. The TULIPP reference platform includes a full development kit, comprising an FPGA-based embedded, multicore computing board, parallel real-time operating system and development tool chain with guidelines, coupled with ‘real world’ Use Cases focusing on diverse applications such as medical x-ray imaging, driver assistance and autonomous drones with obstacle avoidance. The complete TULIPP ecosystem was demonstrated earlier in the year to vision-based system designers in a series of hands-on tutorials.


“The TULIPP project has achieved all of its objectives,” said Philippe Millet of Thales and TULIPP’s Project Co-ordinator. “By taking a diverse range of application domains as the basis for defining a common reference processing platform that captures the commonality of real-time, high-performance image processing and vision applications, it has successfully addressed the fundamental challenges facing today’s embedded vision-based system designers.”


Developed by Sundance Multiprocessor Technology, each instance of the TULIPP processing platform is 40mm x 50mm and is compliant with the PC/104 embedded processor board standard. The hardware platform utilizes the powerful multicore Xilinx Zynq Ultrascale+ MPSoC which contains, along with the Xilinx FinFET+ FPGA, an ARM Cortex-A53 quad-core CPU, an ARM Mali-400 MP2 Graphics Processing Unit (GPU), and a real-time processing unit (RPU) containing a dual-core ARM Cortex-R5 32-bit real-time processor based on the ARM-v7R architecture. A separate expansion module (VITA57.1 FMC) allows application-specific boards with different flavours of input and output interfaces to be created while keeping the interfaces with the processing module consistent.


Coupled with the TULIPP hardware platform, is a parallel, low latency embedded real- time operating system developed by Hipperos specifically to manage complex multi- threaded embedded applications in a predictable manner. Perfect real-time co- ordination ensures a high frame rate without missing any deadlines or data. Additionally, to facilitate the efficient development of image processing applications on the TULIPP hardware and in order to help vision-based systems designers understand the impact of their functional mapping and scheduling choices on the available resources, the TULIPP reference platform has been extended with performance analysis and power measurement features developed by Norges Teknisk-Naturvitenskapelige Universitet (NTNU) and Technische Universität Dresden (TUD) and implemented in the TULIPP STHEM toolchain.


TULIPP  coordinator@tulipp.euwww.tulipp.eu


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