Safe and secure virtualization for embedded microcontrollers

January 11, 2021 // By Jean-Pierre Joosting
Safe and secure virtualization for embedded microcontrollers with µ-visor
First implementation of µ-visor available on Renesas RH850/U2A MCU provides the essential foundation for ECU consolidation in automotive designs.

Green Hills Software has announced the release of µ-visor™, its safe and secure embedded virtualization hypervisor, for the Renesas RH850/U2A microcontroller (MCU). Designed to support the emerging automotive cybersecurity requirements of ISO/SAE 21434 and UNECE WP.29 and to meet ISO 26262 ASIL D functional safety, µ-visor for MCUs expands Green Hills leadership in safe and secure virtualization technology and its product line. µ-visor joins the proven, broadly deployed INTEGRITY Multivisor® virtualization for application processors already used in tens of millions of commercial vehicles worldwide.

The basis for safe and secure consolidation of multiple MCU-based systems onto a single multicore RH850/U2A design, µ-visor enables savings in cost, size, and power for the resulting consolidated system, while at the same time simplifying the safety design of the system. By employing the advanced hardware-based assisted virtualization capabilities of the RH850/U2A, µ-visor allows multiple virtual machines to run simultaneously, supporting a variety of scheduling and core management strategies to meet various automotive uses cases and to ensure extremely low overhead.

The Green Hills MULTI® integrated development environment (IDE) and related ISO 26262 ASIL D-certified tools provide developers with tightly integrated tools that deliver unprecedented visibility into system performance and runtime behaviour, enabling rapid integration and optimization of multiple workloads onto a single RH850/U2A MCU. Further, µ-visor can host a variety of operating systems, including AUTOSAR environments from third-party vendors, Green Hills Software’s own µ-velOSity™ operating system, customer in-house operating systems, or micro-executive designs, giving customers a great deal of flexibility on how to design consolidation for their automotive controller use cases, including support for ECU safety islands.


The Renesas RH850/U2A is the first MCU with embedded flash that integrates a hardware-based virtualization-assisted function while maintaining the fast, real-time performance that customers expect of the RH850 products. The hardware virtualization function supports ISO 26262 ASIL D functional safety, enabling greater levels of system integration of the safety applications of automotive OEMs and Tier 1s into a single, unified MCU-based electronic control unit (ECU). To support ASIL D, the hardware-based virtualization technology allows customers to implement multiple software services with different functional safety levels on the RH850/U2A MCU that can run concurrently without interference while maintaining the hard real-time deterministic performance required to control modern and future vehicle functions. µ-visor from Green Hills Software fully supports all of these advanced capabilities.

“Green Hills Software’s virtualization technology for application processors is already in production in tens of millions of vehicles today,” said Matthew Slager, Vice President of Asia-Pacific Operations at Green Hills Software. “By extending our virtualization technology expertise and experience into the MCU market with µ-visor and working with Renesas, Green Hills Software can offer best-in-class performance, functional safety and cybersecurity on the RH850/U2A, allowing automotive customers to achieve the challenging goals of developing and deploying highly performant and entirely safe and secure ECU consolidation.”

www.ghs.com


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