FPGA Interchange Format

What is the FPGA Interchange Format?

The FPGA Interchange Format (FPGAIF) is a standard exchange format designed to provide all the information necessary to perform placement and routing in an open source context. It contains three major schemas that define how to transfer the following kinds of data in an architecture-independent way:

  1. FPGA architecture device model: The available placement and programmable routing resources on the FPGA

  2. Logical netlist: Cell definitions, networks, pins, hierarchy, etc.

  3. Physical netlist: Placement mappings and routing configurations, i.e. mapping the logical netlist to the FPGA architecture device model

The FPGAIF is hosted as an open source project under the CHIPS Alliance and original development was started in 2020.

What does the FPGA Interchange Format enable?

Primarily it allows tools–both commercial and open source–an open way to exchange FPGA device and design data to enable customized place and route solutions. Some tools and efforts that support the FPGAIF: