SystemC Simulation of Networked Embedded Systems
The design and simulation of next-generation networked embedded systems are a challenging task since System design choices may affect the network behavior and Network design choices may impact on the System design. For this reason, it is important—at the early stages of the design flow—to model and simulate not only the system under design, but also the heterogeneous networked environment in which it operates. However, System designers are more focused on System design issues and tools while Network aspects are dealt implicitly by choosing traditional protocols even if, in this case, the chance of joint optimization is lost. To solve this issue, we have exploited a modeling language traditionally used for System design—SystemC—to build a System/Network simulator named SystemC Network Simulation Library (SCNSL). This library allows to model network scenarios in which different kinds of nodes, or nodes described at different abstraction levels, interact together. The use of SystemC as unique tool has the advantage that HW, SW, and network can be jointly designed, validated and refined. As a case study, the proposed tool has been used to simulate a sensor network application and it has been compared with NS-2, a well-known network simulator; SCNSL shows nearly two-order-magnitude speed up with TLM modeling and about the same performance as NS-2 with a mixed TLM/RTL scenario. The simulator is partially available to the community at http://sourceforge.net/projects/scnsl/.
KeywordsNetworked embedded systems Network simulation IEEE 802.15.4 SystemC
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