Exploiting Partial Reconfiguration through PCIe for a Microphone Array Network Emulator
This publication appears in: International Journal of Reconfigurable Computing
Authors: B. da Silva Gomes, A. Braeken, F. Dominguez and A. Touhafi
Publication Date: May. 2018
The current Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) technologyenables the deployment of relatively low-cost wireless sensornetworks composed of MEMS microphone arrays for accuratesound-source localization. However, the evaluation and the selectionof the most accurate and power-efficient networks topologyis not trivial when considering dynamic MEMS microphone arrays.Although software simulators are usually considered, they consistof high-computational intensive tasks, which require hours to daysto be completed. In this paper, we present an FPGA-based platformto emulate a network of microphone arrays. Our platform providesa controlled simulated acoustic environment, able to evaluate theimpact of different network configurations such as the number ofmicrophones per array, the networks topology or the used detectionmethod. Data fusion techniques, combining the data collectedby each node, are used in this platform. The platform is designedto exploit the FPGAs partial reconfiguration feature to increasethe flexibility of the network emulator as well as to increase performancethanks to the use of the PCI-express high-bandwidthinterface. On the one hand, the network emulator presents a higherflexibility by partially reconfiguring the nodes architecture in runtime.On the other hand, a set of strategies and heuristics to properlyuse partial reconfiguration allows the acceleration of the emulationby exploiting the execution parallelism. Several experiments arepresented to demonstrate some of the capabilities of our platformand the benefits of using partial reconfiguration.