Computer Laboratory

ECAD and Architecture Practical Classes

The Terasic tPad Development and Education Board

The tPad is a Altera DE2-115 board with a touchscreen LCD and low resolution camera attached to the one of the general purpose I/O ports. The Altera DE2-115 contains a Cyclone IV FPGA in addition to various types of I/O. Looking at the back of the tPad oriented with the camera at the top left many ports can be seen towards the top with chips implementing associated logic. Included among these is the USB blaster labelled BLASTER which is used to program the Cyclone IV located to the right of the center. To the left of this is a monochrome LCD. Then along the bottom there are arrays of 7 segment LEDs, green LEDs red LEDs, switches and push buttons. The other chips on the bottom half are two SDRAMs, an SRAM and some flash memory.

This board does not include a processor. Instead, you will be making use of two soft processor cores. The first, TTC ([Chuck] Thacker's Tiny Computer), is a tiny but practical processor which will be introduced during your Computer Architecture lectures. You will write programs for this processor then simulate them in the second part of this first lab and modify it in the second lab. The other is the NIOS-II which is a standard Altera component which will be used in the second lab.

For (a lot of) further details, see the tPad manual and the DE2-115 manual.

DE2-115 board on the tPad

Block diagram of the DE2-115 board used on the tPad