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Ultra-low power IP sub-system for sensors

Posted: 01 Aug 2013     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Synopsys  IP sub-system  sensor  DesignWare Sensor IP Sub-system  DesignWare ARC EM4 

Synopsys Inc. has debuted its DesignWare Sensor IP Sub-system that the company describes as a complete and integrated hardware and software solution for sensor control applications. The IP sub-system is optimised to process data from digital and analogue sensors, offloading the host processor and enabling more efficient processing of the sensor data with ultra-low power, detailed the firm.

The fully configurable sub-system consists of a DesignWare ARC EM4 32bit processor, digital interfaces, ADCs, hardware accelerators, a comprehensive software library of DSP functions and software I/O drivers. The DesignWare Sensor IP Sub-system provides designers with a complete and pre-verified solution that meets the requirements of a broad range of applications such as smart sensors, sensor fusion and sensor hub, added Synopsys.

The sub-system features the power- and area-efficient DesignWare ARC EM4 32bit processor core, which includes custom extensions and instructions that support application-specific hardware accelerators and tightly integrated peripherals. The sub-system includes multiple configurable GPIO, SPI and I2C digital interfaces for off-chip sensor connections as well as ARM AMBA AHB and APB protocol system interfaces to ease integration into the full SoC. The analogue interfaces include low-power high-resolution ADCs that efficiently digitise sensor data for the processor. The sensor sub-system's HAPS FPGA-based prototyping solution enables immediate software development and provides a scalable platform for rapid full system integration and validation. Synopsys also offers SoC integration services to help customers integrate the sub-system into their chip or customise it to meet their unique application requirements.

The DesignWare Sensor IP Sub-system offers a rich library of DSP functions, including mathematical, complex math, filtering (FIR, IIR, correlation, etc.), matrix/vector and decimation/interpolation that help accelerate sensor application code development, the company noted. In addition, peripheral software drivers are provided to ease integration of the I/O with the ARC EM4 processor, and host drivers are provided to interface the DesignWare Sensor IP Sub-system to the host processor.

The sensor-specific software functions can also be implemented in hardware to boost performance efficiency and reduce memory footprint. An easy-to-use configuration tool in combination with sensor-specific architectural templates allow designers to quickly select options such as the DSP functions and digital interfaces required for their specific application, enabling a complete sensor sub-system to be configured in hours instead of weeks.

The DesignWare Sensor IP Sub-system is targeted for availability in October 2013 to early adopters, with general availability planned for Q4 2013.

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