JTAG Boundary Scan

Boundary-scan, as defined by the IEEE Std. 1149.1 standard, is an integrated method for testing interconnects on printed circuit boards that is implemented at the IC level. The inability to test highly complex and dense printed circuit boards using traditional in-circuit testers and bed of nail fixtures was already evident in the mid eighties. Due to physical space constraints and loss of physical access to fine pitch components and BGA devices, fixturing cost increased dramatically while fixture reliability decreased at the same time.

In the 1980s, the Joint Test Action Group (JTAG) developed a specification for boundary-scan testing that was standardized in 1990 as the IEEE Std. 1149.1-1990. In 1993 a new revision to the IEEE Std. 1149.1 standard was introduced (titled 1149.1a) and it contained many clarifications, corrections, and enhancements.

In 1994, a supplement that contains a description of the boundary-scan Description Language (BSDL) was added to the standard. Since that time, this standard has been adopted by major electronics companies all over the world.

Applications are found in high volume, high-end consumer products, telecommunication products, defense systems, computers, peripherals, and avionics. Now, due to its economic advantages, smaller companies that cannot afford expensive in-circuit testers are using boundary-scan.

New to JTAG Boundary Scan?

Here are some resources and tutorials to help understand and leverage the benefits of JTAG Boundary-Scan technology.

Corelis and Blackhawk JTAG Boundary Scan Compatibility

Corelis and Blackhawk are both part of EWA Technologies, Inc. and have integrated the powerful JTAG Boundary-scan tools from Corelis with the Advanced JTAG emulators from Blackhawk.  This integration allows customers who are currently using Blackhawk emulators to debug their TI DSP boards to extend their test capability by being able to run Corelis boundary scan software tools without the added expense of  purchasing another controller.  Greater testability for less money!

Below is a list of Corelis products already integrated and tested with the Blackhawk XDS560 and XDS560v2-class emulators along with a short description and link to the Corelis web site for additional details. To find out if your emulator and processor are supported, please contact Corelis or Blackhawk by email or phone, because the list is always growing... C2000, C5000, C6000, OMAP, Davinci, etc.

JTAG Boundary Scan Tools

ScanExpress Programmer

ScanExpress Programmer offers several programming methods. Utilizing a high-performance Corelis controller with built-in support for JTAG, I2C, and SPI, and user friendly Windows-based software, ScanExpress Programmer can program components utilizing any of four individually licensed modules: SPI Programmer I2C Programmer Target Assisted Flash Programmer (TAFP) JTAG Programmer.

ScanExpress Programmer Details


ScanExpress Debugger

The ScanExpress Debugger is an excellent tool for engineers doing debug during prototype design verification and testing. It is very useful for finding shorts and opens on and between BGA devices and other fine-pitch components. The ScanExpress Debugger allows interactive control and observation of all the boundary-scan controllable inputs and outputs on a Unit Under Test (UUT). It can also apply data to inputs of clusters and read their responses if the cluster I/Os are accessible via boundary-scan components.

ScanExpress Debugger Details


ScanExpress Runner

The ScanExpress system includes the ability to execute boundary-scan tests and perform In-System Programming in a pre-planned specific order called a test plan. Test vectors, in the form of Compact Vector Format (CVF) files which have been generated using ScanExpressTPG, can be automatically executed and the results displayed and logged to a file. Other formats such as SVF, JAM, STAPL, and J-Drive are also supported. Different test plans may be constructed for different UUT's. Tests within a test plan may be reordered, enabled or disabled. An unlimited number of different tests can be combined into a test plan. The software used to run these tests is ScanExpress Runner.

ScanExpress Runner Details


Target Assisted Flash Programmer (TAFP)

The Target Assisted Flash Programmer takes advantage of the embedded CPU on the target board to shorten the Flash memory programming time and simplify the operation of Flash programming. With the Target Assisted Flash Programmer, the user can perform many Flash programming functions such as erase, blank check, program, verify, obtain device ID, etc. All of these functions can be performed while the device is installed in-circuit. The Target Assisted Flash Programmer has the ability to test the JTAG connection, test the RAM, check the Flash device ID, erase the Flash device, verify the erasure, download Flash data to RAM, program the Flash device, and verify the Flash data in one step.

TAFP Details


ScanExpress JET

JTAG Emulation Test (JET) makes automatic test generation of structural and functional testing a reality. This test methodology extends coverage beyond popular boundary-scan techniques to virtually every signal accessible by an on-board processor (CPU). It drastically improves test coverage and diagnostic information. JET testing is dependent on the UUT having a JTAG-enabled CPU on-board. The JET method harnesses the power of the target embedded CPU to assist in the code download, device programming and testing operations, at full processing speed.

ScanExpress JET Details