Design of FPGA based NIOS-II Soft Core Processor for a wearable Tele Cardiac System


Authors: G. Kavya,
Abstract: Recently, the application fields of the embedded system have got expanded and the system complexity got increased. This has led to the need of high performance applications that use System on a programmable chip (SoPC). The integration of several hardware modules on a single chip is called SoPC, a single chip solution. This paper deals with the design of Nios II soft core processor using Qsys technology for a Telemedicine application. A soft-core processor is the central component of a system defined in software that can be synthesized in Programmable hardware called FPGAs. The design of SoPC for a Telecardiac system is done using Quartus II- Qsys system. Here the application of the system is validated on an Altera cyclone IV series FPGA chip. As the Qsys technology is used, the system provides high integration, high design flexibility, small volume and low power consumption. The system is configured by NIOS soft core CPU using Verilog HDL and C language. The proposed system can be used in Bio-Medicine (measuring various parameters using softcore) and control systems, etc. This paper discusses one such application in which continuous acquisition and analyzes of the acquired ECG signal is performed using a soft core Nios II processor implemented in Altera DE0 Nano FPGA board; and if any abnormality detected a SMS with calculated beat per minute and patient’s location is sent to the caretaker or doctor through a GSM module. The major contribution in this work is that baseband operations of GSM module and GPS receiver are performed in separate soft processors and they are implemented in the same FPGA board.


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