A Low-Power Multithreaded Processor for Software Defined Radio
Journal of VLSI Signal Processing Systems for Signal, Image and Video Technology
Embedded digital signal processors for software defined radio have stringent design constraints including high computational bandwidth, low power consumption, and low interrupt latency. Furthermore, due to rapidly evolving communication standards with increasing code complexity, these processors must be compiler-friendly, so that code for them can quickly be developed in a high-level language. In this paper, we present the design of the Sandblaster Processor, a low-power multithreaded digital
... gnal processor for software defined radio. The processor uses a unique combination of token triggered threading, powerful compound instructions, and SIMD vector operations to provide real-time baseband processing capabilities with very low power consumption. We describe the processor's architecture and microarchitecture, along with various techniques for achieving high performance and low power dissipation. We also describe the processor's programming environment and the SB3010 platform, a complete system-on-chip solution for software defined radio. Using a super-computer class vectorizing compiler, the SB3010 achieves real-time performance in software on a variety of communication protocols including 802.11b, GPS, AM/FM radio, Bluetooth, GPRS, and WCDMA. In addition to providing a programmable platform for SDR, the processor also provides efficient support for a wide variety of digital signal processing and multimedia applications.