The Case for RISC-V in Space

  • Stefano Di Mascio
  • Alessandra Menicucci
  • Gianluca Furano
  • Claudio Monteleone
  • Marco OttaviEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Electrical Engineering book series (LNEE, volume 573)


This paper presents preliminary position on the use of the novel, free and open RISC-V Instruction Set Architecture (ISA) for on-board electronics in space. The modular nature of this ISA, the availability of a rich software ecosystem, a rapidly growing community and a pool of open-source IP cores will allow Space Industry to spin-in developments from terrestrial fields (in terms of security, artificial intelligence, support for operating systems, hardware acceleration etc.) while focusing its efforts mainly on aspects related to the specific needs of on-board electronics for space applications (e.g. fault tolerance, observability, error signaling, etc.). This will improve reuse and avoid the necessity of developments from scratch when not strategically needed, eventually increasing productivity and reducing costs. The use of an open, non proprietary ISA will allow ad-hoc design of microarchitecture-level soft error countermeasures that can greatly increase the robustness of Application Specific Standard Products (ASSP) and FPGA implementations.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stefano Di Mascio
    • 1
  • Alessandra Menicucci
    • 1
  • Gianluca Furano
    • 2
  • Claudio Monteleone
    • 2
  • Marco Ottavi
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Delft University of Technology, Faculty of Aerospace Engineering, Space Systems EngineeringDelftThe Netherlands
  2. 2.European Space Agency, European Space Technology CentreNoordwijkThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Department of Electronic EngineeringUniversity of Rome Tor VergataRomeItaly

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