ampeROSE – Hello, World!

Hello, everyone!

We are the team ampeROSE, and over the next 100 days we will design and build an ammeter adapted to the task of profiling the energy consumption of Internet of Things (IOT) devices. Our goal is to arrive at a prototype for a device that is as affordable as possible, all while meeting the particular needs of engineering teams working in the IOT space. Some of such needs that we are already aware of are as follows:

The current consumption of an IOT device may be kept in the range tens of nanoamperes while in sleep mode. On the other hand, such a device will hit peaks of 20 mA when it’s transferring data through technologies like BLE and Lora, and 100 mA when it’s using Wi-Fi. Thus, the ammeter must have a dynamic range large enough to cover this variation of magnitude in the order of tens of millions, so that both extremes may be precisely profiled. Being able to effectively take the peaks in current consumption into account is important, because the performance of batteries used in the context of IOT decreases dramatically outside of the behavior for which their capacity is specified (usually an average current consumption of 1uA with peaks of 2mA).

Furthermore, in order to keep track of these sudden variations in current consumption, the ammeter must be able to auto-calibrate, and achieve a sampling rate of 1 MHz or more. This elevated sampling rate, in turn, will make it necessary to find good solutions for storing large amounts of measurements in memories integrated in our device, and for transfering them to a host computer (with USB2, USB3 and/or Ethernet).

Finally, the ammeter should have an associated UI that is simple and effective, and have features that facilitate its integration with automated testing, such as being able to be started through either software or an external input.

We are looking forward to facing the design challenges that building the ampeROSE device will present, and to sharing them with you in this blog!

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