Energy Profiling of DSP Applications, A Case Study of an Intelligent ECG Monitor

Dejan Raskovic, Emil Jovanov
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Proper balance of power and performance for optimum system organization requires precise profiling of the power consumption of different hardware subsystems as well as software functions. Moreover, power consumption of mobile systems is even more important, since the battery is a large portion of the overall size and weight of the system. Average power consumption is only a crude estimate of power requirements and battery life; a much better estimate can be made using dynamic power consumption. Dynamic power consumption is a function of the execution profile of the given application running on specific hardware platform. In this paper we introduce a new environment for energy profiling of DSP applications. The environment consists of a JTAG emulator, a high-resolution HP 3583A multimeter and a workstation that controls devices and stores the traces. We use Texas Instruments’ Real Time Data Exchange mechanism (RTDXÔ) to generate an execution profile and custom procedures for energy profile data acquisition using GPIB interface. We developed custom procedures to correlate and analyze both energy and execution profiles. The environment allows us to improve the system power consumption through changes in software organization and to measure real battery life for the given hardware, software and battery configuration. As a case study, we present the analysis of a real-time portable ECG monitor implemented using a Texas Instruments TMS320C5410-100 processor board, and a Del Mar PWA ECG Amplifier.