An EEMBC Benchmark Suite


EEMBC IoTMark is an objective, standardized benchmarking framework for measuring the energy efficiency of internet of things (IoT) edge nodes. We define an edge node, or "thing" of the IoT, as a platform with three primary parts: a sensor, a processor, and a radio interface. IoTMark determines the combined energy consumption of these elements as a way of helping designers choose the best microcontroller, RF components, and communications protocol for their application.

Due to their ubiquity and size, IoT products have extraordinarily low power requirements. IoTMark helps developers understand how hardware choice impacts their battery life.

The Importance of Energy

Battery life is often one of the most important factors in the design of an IoT edge node since many such platforms are deployed in settings where grid power is unavailable and human intervention to change batteries must be kept to a minimum. The processors in such applications, such as an array of solar panels in the desert, are typically relaying fixed amounts of data from the environment to an internet gateway at real-world speeds. As a result, maximizing processor performance is a much lower priority than maximizing battery run times.

Benchmarks in the Suite

There are two benchmarks included in IoTMark. The first is IoTMark-BLE, a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) benchmark. The second, tentatively called IoTMark-Wi-Fi, will focus on Wi-Fi and is currently under development.

The Benchmark Framework

The physical measurement apparatus consists of the readily available, low-cost components shown below. At the center of the energy measurement capability is the STMicroelectronics PowerShield, which can measure energy down 100nJ. New versions of the framework can use multiple energy monitors, including the Keysight N6705 and Joulescope JS110.

The IoTConnect framework creates an extensible framework for probing an embedded system. Block diagram (left), actual implementation (right). Click to enlarge. (Icons created by 'BAM! Creative Studio for The Noun Project)

Here is a CSV file listing the BOM for the Framework available on DigiKey.

Thanks to a member of our working group, we now have a set of Gerber files for an IoTMark shield. This shield eliminates the need for a breadboard and reduces the wiring clutter between the IO Manager, DUT and EMON. It plugs directly into the IO Manager as shown below. Further, by removing jumper J9 on the EMON and (and connecting EMON_TS to D7), the three boards can be sandwiched together to save even more space. Download the Gerber files and review the schematic PDF. This shield can also be used with ULPMark and SecureMark-TLS benchmarks.

NEW! You may now order these from OSHPark with this link.

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