Memory requirements for SDR designs reduced by 50%

Friday, 22 June, 2007

Green Hills Software and Objective Interface Systems have collaborated on a technique that reduces the memory footprint of the software used to build software-defined radios (SDRs).

"While the promise of dynamic interoperability and reconfigurability enabled by SDRs is impressive, developers have been challenged to meet the stringent resource and performance requirements often associated with mobile radio technology," said David Kleidermacher, chief technology officer, Green Hills Software.

"This optimisation technique, with its powerful impact on software footprint, will ease the plight of the SDR software developer and enable a compelling price-performance proposition for both designers and end users."

"Three years ago our software-defined radio customers recognised that we had the smallest footprint in the industry, and asked us to find a new solution to further optimise size reductions in the rest of their radios," said Bill Beckwith, CEO/CTO, Objective Interface Systems.

"After rigorous engineering requirements discussions, a new method was created to automatically remove unused C++ virtual functions."

The resulting extensions to Green Hills Software's MULTI development tools automatically optimise the size of the system, reducing the size of existing SCA implementations without short-changing radio designs by departing from standards.

SDRs are built using middleware called the SCA, an open architecture framework that governs the structure and operation of the radio, enabling it to dynamically load and run waveforms and be networked into an integrated system.

The breadth of functionality provided by the SCA results in a sophisticated software platform that may occupy significant computing resources on the radio, placing a strain on size, weight and power (SWaP).

The optimisation technique identifies and deletes unused portions of this SCA framework, yielding a 50% reduction in memory usage.

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