Debug tool gives power insights for ULP projects on Atmel MCUs

December 16, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Targeting ultra-low-power (ULP) designs for internet of things, wearables and other applications requiring extremely low power, debug tools from Atmel enable developers to identify and eliminate power spikes during development.

The high-accuracy debugging tool enables users to visualise the power usage of their product during the development cycle; being able to locate code where power spikes occur is crucial for supporting extremely low power in the overall design. The Power Debugger is Atmel’s latest development tool for debugging and programming Atmel | SMART ARM Cortex-M–based MCUs and Atmel AVR MCUs that use JTAG, SWD, PDI, debugWIRE, aWire, TPI or SPI target interfaces.

In addition to standard low-level debug functionality, the Power Debugger features two independent current-sensing channels for collecting real-time power measurements during application execution. The Atmel Power Debugger streams such power measurements collected to the Atmel Data Visualizer—available in Atmel Studio 7 IDE—for real-time analysis and display. The Data Visualizer graphs power usage in real-time and uses this data to estimate application battery life. The Data Visualizer also enables developers to correlate power samples with the code that was executing when the sample was taken, greatly reducing the time required to identify “hot spots” in the developers’ application.

The Power Debugger is available for purchase from the Atmel web store: www.atmel.com/tools/atpowerdebugger.aspx/ and through Atmel distributors.