Power Modeling for Fast Power Estimation on FPGA

Abstract : Nowadays energy consumption is a major criterion in any electronic system, especially when it comes to systems working at high throughput with restricted energy consumption constraints like in the Internet of things (IoT), wireless sensor networks, etc. In a near future, these devices will connect billions of services with different computing intensive applications including smart homes, wearable devices, health-care and smart cities. For these devices, the major source of power will be a either a battery or an energy harvesting system. In this context, new design constraints are going to appear and will definitely require to take power consumption into account during all the design process and especially in the first steps, at high-level where decisions have the greatest impact on the performances. In our work, a power estimation methodology has been proposed to allow the designer to explore various hardware architectures in terms of power consumption and performances. After a simple high-level simulation, designers are able to compare several approaches and orient their choices toward an efficient solution. In our study, FPGAs devices have been first considered but we believe that this methodology could also be applied to circuits like ASICs. This methodology consists in developing several power models for different operators or IPs like the arithmetic operators (adders, multipliers and memories), integrating them with high-level tools like Matlab and Labview for high-level power estimation. The methodology aims to make design space exploration a lot easier, providing early and fast power and performance estimation at high-level. It also proposes an efficient way to efficiently compare several systems. The methodology is effective through an operator characterization step and the development of their models. Then, a high-level description of the entire system is realized from the models that have been previously developed. High-level simulations enable to check the functionality and evaluate the power and performance of the system. These power models are based on neural networks that predict the power consumed by digital operators implemented on FPGA. These operators are interconnected and the statistical information of the data patterns are propagated among them. The obtained results make possible an overall power estimation of a specific design. A comparison is performed to evaluate the accuracy of the power models against the Xilinx Power Analyzer tool (XPA) for individual operators with an mean absolute percentage error that show an accuracy with less than 0.01%. Case studies are also presented as well as a focus on global power estimation for digital signal processing (DSP) function. Our approach shows a mean absolute percentage error of 12% versus the time consuming Xilinx classical flow of power estimation based on (XPA). This new power estimation approach based on the decomposition of a digital system into basic operators. Each operator will be given its own model which estimates the switching activity of internal and output signals. By interconnecting several operators at high-level, switching activities and percentage of logic high are then propagated to enable a global power 1
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Submitted on : Thursday, February 8, 2018 - 12:57:04 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, February 5, 2019 - 5:22:02 PM
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  • HAL Id : hal-01695867, version 1


Yehya Nasser, Jean-Christophe Prevotet, Maryline Hélard. Power Modeling for Fast Power Estimation on FPGA. 2018. ⟨hal-01695867⟩



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