Ultra-Low Power Edge Processing for Always-On Sensing

Aspinity has developed a revolutionary new technology that enables the implementation of ultra-low power, data-efficient, always-on sensing solutions at the edge. In today’s always-on sensing solutions, the intelligence is distributed between the edge and the cloud, collecting data from the environment and digitizing it for local analysis of potential wake words before sending it on to the cloud for final verification. This methodology wastes significant power digitizing, analyzing, and wirelessly transmitting irrelevant data.

For lower-bandwidth applications such as fitness trackers and motion detectors, this low level of edge intelligence can meet the power budget of battery-operated devices by duty cycling or turning on and off the data gathering system without impacting the application. However, for higher-bandwidth applications such as voice and vibration, where all sound input is critical and must be processed, duty cycling reduces the accuracy of the application.

Aspinity’s unique, ultra-low power Reconfigurable Analog/Mixed-Signal Integrated Circuit (RAMP IC) technology brings a higher level of intelligence to the edge by changing the paradigm from a "digitize" first architecture, where all data is digitized/analyzed, to an "analyze" first architecture, where sensor data is only digitized for higher level analysis when an event signature (voice, vibration, etc.) has been detected. For high bandwidth, random and sporadic applications such as always-on voice wake-up, the RAMP IC brings a higher level of intelligence to the edge of battery-operated voice-first devices, reducing the power required by 10x by eliminating the digitization and processing of the 80% of sound that is not voice.


The RAMP Technology Platform

The unique and patented RAMP technology platform is a scalable and programmable analog signal processor (ASP) that can be implemented in a standard CMOS process and can support sophisticated data-analysis algorithms for a multitude of applications. RAMP technology enables digital signal processing tasks to be replicated in analog—where they can process data more accurately and completely at a much lower power draw.

Aspinity has leveraged the large-signal characteristics of a small number of transistors to develop an architecture of modular, parallel, and continuously operating analog blocks that are configurable for typical analog tasks such sensor interfacing, signal processing, and data conversion, but also more complex tasks such as feature extraction, event detection, and classification. Further innovations have enabled the reduction in size and power of these analog sub-blocks. The result is an ultra-low power, always-on sensing architecture that can replicate traditional DSP tasks and algorithms in analog, eliminating the power and data inefficiencies in the system, and enabling a new generation of portable, battery-operated, always-on sensing devices.