A Self-adaptable Distributed DFS Scheme for NoC-based MPSoCs

Thiago Raupp da RosaDouglas CardosoFernando Moraes

A clear trend in high-end embedded systems is the use of multiprocessor systems on chip (MPSoCs). Asprocessor count in these devices increases, the use of NoCs becomes relevant, if not mandatory. However, power and energy restrictions, especially in mobile applications may render the design of NoC-based MPSoCs over-constrained. The use of traditional dynamic voltage and frequency scaling (DVFS) techniques proved useful in several scenarios to save energy/power, but it presents scaling problems and slow response times. This work proposes a self-adaptable distributed dynamic frequency scaling (DFS) scheme for NoC-based MPSoCs. It takes into account the communication load and the utilization level of each processor to dynamically change its operating frequency. Frequency change decisions and clock generation are executed locally to each processor. Clock generation is simple, based on clock gating of a single global clock. The overhead of the scheme in terms of area is minimum, the range of generated clocks frequencies is wide and the response time of frequency switching is negligible. Experimental results in an actual MPSoC running a real application show that the proposed scheme has an average execution time overhead below 14%, and may lead to considerable power and energy savings, since it allows an average reduction of 64% on the total number of executed instructions.

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