Lecture slides for EMBS can be found on the VLE.

The purpose of the EMBS practicals is to help you to:

  • Get comfortable with using FPGAs and the Xilinx development tools.
  • Learn about programming embedded microcontrollers.
  • Learn the Vivado HLS hardware development language.
  • Start thinking about the way that hardware is implemented on FPGAs, and which constructs are cheap and which are expensive in terms of logic usage.
  • Learn how to engineer the architecture of a solution to exploit the parallelism available.
  • Explore the trade-offs that are found in embedded development.

You must complete each practical before the start of the next one, as many of the concepts used will be examined in the assessment. If any aspects of the practicals are unclear, please ask Ian to explain.


The Resources pages show information about the tools and devices we are using, as well as links to full documentation.

The content on these pages is essential for completing the practicals.

Formative Logbook

At points throughout the practicals, blue text will tell you to show something to Ian once you complete a task. These are formative contact points to help you to progress through the course. In one of the practical sessions or drop in sessions we will discuss what you did, and get feedback on how you could have done it better. I will mark down your progress so that I can keep an eye on how everyone is progressing.

List of Practicals

These practicals should be attempted in order as they build on knowledge from the previous practicals. The "week" designations are not precise. You might not get all done each week, but do try to vaguely keep up with the proposed schedule.

Spring Term Practicals:

Week 5

Weeks 6 and 7

Week 8

Week 9-10

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