Uncapping this Bluetooth-enabled pen provides enough energy to track and transmit data for diabetics
Bluetooth-enabled insulin pens, like the one pictured above, conveniently record blood glucose levels and insulin delivery dosage, then transmits this data to the user’s smartphone via Bluetooth. This particular pen is battery-less, and relies entirely on energy harvested during its uncapping to log and transmit data. Operating in such an energy-constrained environment, while securing personal user data from unauthorized access, are the types of requirements the Cortex-M23 was designed to address.
The Cortex-M23 processor is the smallest and most energy efficient implementation of the ARMv8-M architecture
In 40nm technology, it is less than 0.025mm2. That's about a quarter of the cross sectional area of a human hair! For that size, there is a full 32-bit ARM processor with TrustZone, supporting the full set of ARMv8-M Baseline instructions. The ARMv8-M Baseline instruction set includes about 80 Thumb2 instructions. Most of these are 16-bit wide, keeping code compact, which further translates to small memory footprints. The Cortex-M23 processor inherits all the high-energy-efficiency features of the Cortex-M0+ processor, including a very compact microarchitecture with a two-stage pipeline.
The result is an ARM TrustZone-enabled 32-bit processor core that can operate under 5µW/MHz*
Did you know the Cortex-M23 is about a quarter of the cross sectional area of a human hair?
This configurability allow silicon designers to make tradeoffs between flexibility, power draw, and silicon area of the Cortex-M23 based device. The number of security regions is configurable from 0 to 16. Region locations and access attributes can be fixed, leading to smaller foot prints and power draw, or configurable at runtime. At its minimal configuration, the Cortex-M23 with TrustZone can be as small as one hundredth (1/100) mm2 in 40nm process technology.
Documents describing how it works; tips on how to develop secured embedded software; available tools and RTOS support - all are accessible here. In addition, there's now the TrustZone for ARMv8-M Community available within the ARM Community. It provides an additional level of support, with a host of blogs, whitepapers, videos, Q&A and a discussion forum - created and managed by TrustZone for ARMv8-M experts.
With all of the support and resources ARM and its ecosystem partners offer, TrustZone for ARMv8-M takes obscurity out of secured embedded systems development.
An ultra energy efficient embedded processor with TrustZone technology will spur many more secured energy sipping use-cases: multi-year autonomous coin cell operated IoT nodes, ingestible biomedical nano-robots, disposable battery-less identity bands for children at theme parks or parties.
Surely examples like these are only the tip of the iceberg!
Join the TrustZone for ARMv8-M Community to stay ahead of the curve and interact with the leading developers of tools, silicon and solutions.
For information on Cortex-M23 licensing, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
*dynamic power draw for Dhrystone, 40LP implementation