The Naples Processing Unit, dubbed NaplesPU or NPU, is a comprehensive open-source manycore accelerator, encompassing all the architecture layers from the compute core up to the on-chip interconnect, the coherence memory hierarchy, and the compilation toolchain.

Entirely written in System Verilog HDL, NaplesPU exploits the three forms of parallelism that you normally find in modern compute architectures, particularly in heterogeneous accelerators such as GPU devices: vector parallelism, hardware multithreading, and manycore organization. Equipped with a complete LLVM-based compiler targeting the NaplesPU vector ISA, our open-source project will let you experiment with all of the flavors of today’s manycore technologies.

These are the key ambitions of the NaplesPU project:

  • be a reference open-source project featuring a fully fledged GPU-like processing system,
  • provide a configurable and open platform for the design and evaluation of customized accelerators,
  • offering free remote access to a powerful emulation platform, under negotiated conditions, in addition to the mere source code,
  • become an unparalleled learning resource for students and practitioners who want to put their hands on the internals of a manycore architecture.
Posted in UncategorizedLeave a Comment on Welcome

Open hardware: access our exploration platform!

NaplesPU is not only an open-source project, meaning free access to the code we developed (under the 3-clause BSD licence). We can also provide a physical platform for your architecture exploration! The platform is available as a major outcome of the H2020 MANGO project, and is being maintained with some financial support from the H2020 RECIPE project.

We provide access to two types of FPGA-based resources available for hardware emulation:

  • a cluster of sixteen ultra-large Xilinx Virtex 7 FPGA devices (Virtex 7-2000T),
  • an advanced Xilinx Alveo U280 card, also providing innovative in-package High-Bandwidth Memory v.2, currently provided by Xilinx in a pre-production Engineering Sample (ES) version.
Posted in UncategorizedLeave a Comment on Open hardware: access our exploration platform!

Aiming at Security and Trust

As one of the research lines stemming from our open-hardware project, we are currently exploring the extension of NaplesPU as a building block enabling fully trusted technological stacks and related supply chains in security-critical contexts. This activity is not reflected by the publicly available codebase, as it is part of planned research projects that we are currently shaping.

Posted in UncategorizedLeave a Comment on Aiming at Security and Trust

A custom ISA.. why?

NaplesPU has a custom vector Instruction Set Architecture, or ISA, which distinguishes it from the majority of open-source processor implementations available out there. The rationale behind this choice lies in the very inherent nature of the NaplesPU project and its basic value proposition: being an open, fully customizable, natively vector accelerator. We faced the creation of a custom (LLVM-based) compiler back-end, made available along with the hardware, and indeed we believe that having full control of the compilation toolchain may truly enable the highest degree of architectural exploration capabilities, the basic philosophy of the NaplesPU project.

Posted in UncategorizedLeave a Comment on A custom ISA.. why?

The NaplesPU license

The NaplesPU System Verilog code, as well as the custom parts of the NaplesPU toolchain, are covered by the 3-clause BSD license. This type of licenses is classified as permissive, as it imposes minimal restrictions on the use and distribution of the code. As a consequence, you should feel pretty comfortable while reusing the NaplesPU code for your own purposes. In particular, you are not required to distribute the source code in case you incorporate and/or modify NaplesPU in your project. You are just required to keep the BSD license notice and copyright information in the covered source files, if you redistribute them in an open form, or reproduce the notice and copyright information separately in a readable form, if you redistributed binary code.

That should save you most licensing headaches!

Posted in UncategorizedLeave a Comment on The NaplesPU license

NaplesPU and Mango at Futuro Remoto

Back to 2016, Mango (and NaplesPU, a part of the MANGO project codenamed nu+ at the time) was part of an educational booth at Futuro Remoto, a large Science Festival taking place in Naples, reaching its 30th edition (a couple of links for the event in English and Italian).

The festival received some 230.000 visitors in four days. Of course, our booth was one of many, and the festival addressed a general audience. Nevertheless, we had a great time explaining to younger visitors what you can do with computers, in one of the many forms they can take on today, also telling what we are trying to do with our open-source manycore in simple terms.

Posted in UncategorizedLeave a Comment on NaplesPU and Mango at Futuro Remoto


The NaplesPU project received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the FETHPC grant agreement no. 671668 – MANGO: exploring Manycore Architectures for Next-GeneratiOn HPC systems as well as and under the FETHPC grant agreement no. 801137 RECIPE: REliable power and time-ConstraInts-aware Predictive management of heterogeneous Exascale systems.

Posted in UncategorizedLeave a Comment on Credits