Electrically Programmable Logic Device


An Electrically Programmable Logic Device (EPLD) is a type of digital device that is widely used in circuit design and electronic systems. EPLD is a reusable programmable chip that contains a set of logic gates and can be programmed to perform complex functions. It’s able to retain its program even after power is removed, thanks to its non-volatile configuration memory.


The phonetics for “Electrically Programmable Logic Device” are:Electrically: ih-lek-tri-kuh-leeProgrammable: pruh-gram-uh-buhlLogic: loh-jikDevice: dih-vahys

Key Takeaways

  1. Flexibility and Reprogrammability: An Electrically Programmable Logic Device (EPLD) has a flexible design that offers users the ability to program and reprogram the device according to their specific needs. The reprogrammability feature gives it a competitive edge over other technologies that require a fixed design.
  2. Reduces Time and Cost: By employing EPLD, the time required for the design and development of a product is drastically reduced, as it doesn’t require the physical building and testing of circuit designs. The need for hardware components is also minimized which consequently reduces the overall cost.
  3. High Performance: EPLDs are designed to offer high-speed performance and are therefore commonly used in digital systems. They offer a broad frequency range and fast signal processing capabilities. This makes them ideal for use in various applications, including telecommunications and computer systems.


The term Electrically Programmable Logic Device (EPLD) is important in technology because it denotes an integrated chip with programmable features, capable of performing complex logical operations, and can be customised to specific operations after manufacturing. This adaptability facilitates cost-effective and time-efficient solutions in various applications like digital systems development, robotics, and communication systems. The highlight of EPLD is that it can be programmed electrically, unlike most chips that need to be pre-programmed before they’re installed. As such, users can easily alter the function of the device even after it has been installed in a system, offering great flexibility in handling evolving technological needs. Thus, EPLDs play an integral role in the technology and electronics industry, paving the way for more flexible, cost-effective, and efficient digital design processes.


The Electrically Programmable Logic Device (EPLD) serves an essential function in the technological arena of digital circuits, specifically for programmable devices. EPLDs are pivotal tools in the digital system design and implementation process due to their ability to be programmed using hardware description languages to perform a wide array of logical operations. The EPLD’s flexible nature allows its applications to extend well beyond fixed logic circuits, with use cases in custom hardware for computers, consumer electronics, industrial automation, and many other digitally driven domains.The main purpose of an EPLD is to provide a hardware platform that can be tailored according to the specific logical needs of a circuit or system. Once programmed, they can conduct numerous logical functions concurrently, thus increasing the computational capacity and speed of digital systems. Notably, these devices can be reprogrammed to accommodate alterations or improvements in system design. This reprogrammable feature makes EPLDs instrumental in rapid prototyping, where design iterations might be frequent. Therefore, EPLDs are vital assets in modern digital design and technology, contributing to the expansion and dynamic growth of this field.


1. Traffic Light Control System: An Electrically Programmable Logic Device (EPLD) is commonly employed in traffic light controllers where the state of different lights (green, red, yellow) are managed for multiple roads. The logic programmed into the device ensures smooth and regulated traffic flow.2. Machine Control: EPLDs are used in control systems for industrial machines and manufacturing processes, where the logic device controls the order of operations, timing, and overall management of complex tasks to ensure efficiency and safety.3. Microwave Ovens: In microwave ovens, an EPLD might be used to control the various functions of the oven. For example, when a certain cooking mode is selected, the logic device will control the corresponding power output and cooking time.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

**1. Q: What is an Electrically Programmable Logic Device (EPLD)?** A: An Electrically Programmable Logic Device is a type of device in digital circuitry that has a generic structure and can be programmed to perform a variety of logical functions. **2. Q: What are the common uses of EPLDs?**A: EPLDs are commonly used in applications where high performance is needed, such as data processing, computer systems, telecommunications, industrial control, and instrumentation.**3. Q: How do EPLDs work?** A: EPLDs work by allowing the user to customize their operation after manufacturing. They contain arrays of programmable logic gates that the user can reconfigure to perform different tasks.**4. Q: What are the advantages of using EPLDs?**A: EPLDs offer several advantages, including fast speed, reliability, low power consumption, high density, and the ability to be reprogrammed as needed. **5. Q: How are EPLDs different from other programmable logic devices?**A: Different from others, EPLDs can be programmed electrically but require special tools for the programming. Once programmed, their logic functions become permanent until they’re reprogrammed. **6. Q: Can an EPLD be reprogrammed?**A: Yes. EPLDs are reprogrammable. They are often programmed, tested, and then re-programmed until the desired functionality is achieved.**7. Q: Is there a limitation on how many times an EPLD can be reprogrammed?**A: Typically, there’s no such limitation, but repeated reprogramming over decades could potentially have an impact.**8. Q: What is the difference between an EPLD and an FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array)?**A: One key difference is that the FPGA can be reprogrammed an unlimited number of times without any special tools, while EPLDs require special tools for programming, and might have a finite lifecycle for reprogramming. **9. Q: Are EPLDs expensive?**A: The cost of EPLDs can vary widely depending on its capacity, performance, manufacturer, and other factors. Generally, they are an affordable solution for customized digital circuitry.**10. Q: Where can I buy an EPLD?**A: EPLDs are commonly available from electronics components suppliers or directly from manufacturers. Always ensure you purchase them from trusted sources.

Related Finance Terms

  • Field-Programmable Gate Array (FPGA)
  • Logic Gates
  • Programmable Logic Device (PLD)
  • Complex Programmable Logic Device (CPLD)
  • Reconfigurable Computing

Sources for More Information

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