According to the Embedded Microprocessor Benchmark Consortium (EEMBC), a work group being chaired by Volkswagen to come up with an energy-efficiency benchmark for microcontrollers.
The working group project is being extended to add to results originally produced in 2011. In addition to Volkswagen it includes 11 semiconductor vendors including Freescale, Fujitsu, Infineon, Microchip, NXP, Renesas, STMicroelectronics, and Texas Instruments.
So far, the group has come up with a specification for measuring performance and energy efficiency of automotive MCUs under various low-power operating conditions, the prototype version of which has been implemented on several semiconductor evaluation boards.
EEMBC's first-generation automotive benchmark suite, AutoBench, focused on an MCU's processing power, measuring the time required to complete specific algorithms. The updated benchmark suite adds tests to measure CPU core performance while simultaneously monitoring peripherals and energy usage.
Individual tests that make up the benchmark suite measure the power consumption of the core CPU and its peripherals under various loads, the amount of time that it spends in low-power modes under various CPU and peripheral application loadings, and the time required to wake the MCU from its various low-power states to resume processing.
The working group is also making an effort to align the benchmark suite with the requirements of Autosar (The AUTomotive Open System ARchitecture), jointly developed by automobile manufacturers and their suppliers.
“Volkswagen has been a long-time leader in the automotive industry and as chair of this project, they will continue to provide inputs to ensure the real-world value of this benchmark and subsequent versions that will address increasing microcontroller complexity and robustness requirements,” said EEMBC president Markus Levy.