NiteFury

by RHS Research LLC

An Artix-7 FPGA with its own DDR3 RAM right in your laptop - for developing PCIe, etc.

$15,631 raised

of $7,500 goal

208% Funded! Order Below

Product Choices

$5

Support Us!


$349

NiteFury

The original NiteFury, with the largest Artix FPGA and 4 Gb DDR3.


$359

NiteFury with Integrated Heatsink

NiteFury with an integrated, permanently installed, low profile heatsink and fan for about 8 W of power dissipation.

Details

Recent Updates


As Featured In

MickMake

"This is an upgrade on the PicoEVB, with Xilinx Artix-7, 1 to 8GB DDR3 RAM, and supporting 4 lane PCIe. This is one beefy FPGA board."

industriaembebidahoy

"Preparada para proporcionar servicios personalizados como los de encriptación/desencriptación, o aceleración, esta FPGA con RAM para desarrollo en PC puede montarse con o sin disipador de calor."

MickMake

"If you want some serious machine-learning grunt, then pick one of these M.2-based FPGA boards."

NiteFury is an Artix-7 FPGA development board in an M.2 form-factor that includes on-board DDR3 RAM. This combination lets you work with PCI Express at incredible rates from inside your laptop or desktop. You can also use NiteFury as an FPGA co-processor. Let Xilinx’s largest Artix-7 handle your encryption or act as a hardware-level encoder/decoder for speedy workflows. It’s your FPGA, design what you like.

NiteFury Features

  • Giant FPGA: NiteFury features the largest Artix-series part that Xilinx makes. It has six times the processing power of PicoEVB. It uses the Xilinx A200T FPGA at just under 1000 GMAC/s.
  • On-board RAM: The faster you process with an Artix-7, the more you may need to store. The on-board DDR3, 512MB (256 Mb x 16) RAM keeps data within arms reach and takes the burden off your computer.
  • Popular Form Factor: NiteFury fits in the M.2 M key slot, which is popular in laptops today. This slot features 4x PCIe for high bandwidth (2 GB/s). Why keep your FPGA on your desk when you can take it with you?
  • Affordable: Buying the Xilinx Artix-7 XC7A200T FPGA alone would generally cost around $250. By teaming up with another company, NiteFury gives you all that power with little additional cost (especially during the campaign).
  • Open Source: Because company is good to have, NiteFury is open source hardware. The board repository is at https://github.com/RHSResearchLLC/NiteFury.
  • Expandable: With twelve external I/O in total, four of which are selectable as either analog or digital, you aren’t just confined to interfacing via computer. The connectors used in the design are easy to find Pico-EZmates and a DF52.

Using NiteFury

NiteFury is designed for seriously fast PCIe design prototyping. But essentially, it’s an FPGA (with RAM) inside your computer. So anything you can do with an FPGA, you can do quickly with NiteFury. Just design for your need in Vivado.

Some fun things you could do:

  • Encode or decode large amounts of data lightning-quick on the hardware level
  • Encryption co-processing for securing your data in an efficient and accessible way
  • Sensor data pre-processing using the I/O
  • Manage external hardware via I/O

Specifications

  • FPGA: Xilinx Artix XC7A200T-2FBG484E
    • GMAC/s: ~1000
    • Logic cells: 215,360
    • Slices: 33,650
    • CLB flip-flops: 269,200
    • DSP slices: 740
  • RAM: DDR3, 512MB (256 Mb x 16)
  • Form Factor: M.2 (NGFF) 2280, keyed for M slot
    • Dimensions (without heatsink): 22 x 80 x 5.5 mm
    • Dimensions (with heatsink): 22 x 80 x 10 mm
  • Host Interface: PCIe 4x gen 2 (2 Gb/s)
  • Host Tools: Vivado
  • External I/O: via I/O connectors - 12 total, 4 selectable analog or digital - JTAG ready
  • External I/O via PCIe connector: 1 x 3.3 V digital I/O (LED), SMBus
  • User-controllable LEDs: 4

NiteFury is open source hardware: https://github.com/RHSResearchLLC/NiteFury

Heatsink

The optional, custom-made NiteFury heatsink allows you to work the Artix-7 FPGA even harder before having to worry about heat buildup. It allows for about 8 W of power dissipation to reach a 100°C junction temperature at an ambient temperature of 25°C. It’s also only 5 mm tall by itself. Mounted to the board, the total height is 10 mm. The heatsink is permanently attached to the NiteFury board.

A heatsink is an absolutely necessity when using NiteFury, so you can either use your own or purchase your unit with the heatsink option.

Note: When using the integrated heatsink, make sure you have at least 7.5 mm of clearance above the top of the board. Not all laptops have this much clearance.

Block Diagram

How NiteFury Compares

Feature NiteFury PicoEVB
FPGA Xilinx Artix XC7A200T Xilinx Artix XC7A50T
Logic Cells 215K 52K
On-board RAM 512 MB DDR3 None
Form Factor M.2 (NGFF) 2280, keyed for M slot M.2 (NGFF) 2230, keyed for A and E slots
Dimensions 22 x 80 x 5.5 mm (without heatsink) 22 x 30 x 3.8 mm
Host Interface PCIe 4x gen 2 PCIe x1 gen 2
Built-in JTAG No Yes
External Interface 12 total I/O, 4 selectable analog or digital No
User-controllable LEDs 4 3

Manufacturing Plan

Having successfully fulfilled orders for PicoEVB, a very similar product in terms of manufacturing, we’re well positioned and prepared for the next iteration - NiteFury.

Shortly after the crowdfunding goal is met, we’ll place orders for the components with the longest lead time, namely, the FPGA.

Shipping & Fulfillment

Units will be shipped to backers from Crowd Supply, so packages will be sent from Portland, Oregon. Shipping to the United States is included in the price of NiteFury. Delivery outside the US will incur a surcharge during checkout. For more information, please see Crowd Supply’s guide on ordering, paying, and shipping.

Risks & Challenges

NiteFury design is complete and prototype-verified, so most of the risk to the project is that which is inherent in any electronics manufacturing. Components could have unanticipated shortages, leading to longer turn-times. There could be errors in the first production run of PCBs or in assembly. Shipping could take longer than expected, damage could occur, or even a shipping loss. But these potential scenarios all have methods of recovery. And, importantly, we’ll keep backers apprised via project updates should any of them occur.


Credits

RHS Research LLC


Dave Reyolds

Subscribe to the Crowd Supply newsletter, highlighting the latest creators and projects: