The paper deals through computer-aided modeling, numerical simulation and experimental research with the bio-inspired digital systems, in order to implement VLSI hardware which exhibits the abilities of living organisms, such as: evolution capabilities, self-healing and fault-tolerance. The theoretical backgrounds of the work are founded in cellular embryology's basic concepts. In the first stage of the researches a new model for an FPGA-based artificial cell is proposed and developed. Also a new communication strategy inside the cell networks is presented, in order to reproduce with high fidelity the complex phenomena and interaction rules in bio-inspired hardware systems. In the next steps the fault-tolerance and self-healing phenomena between these cells in a bi- dimensional structure is careful analyzed and simulated. The final purpose is to design a bio-inspired hardware system (embryonic machine) with programmable FPGA arrays, for study and experiment basic properties of living organisms.