Using its low-power EFM32 Gecko microcontrollers, Energy Micro (Oslo, Norway) has introduced a software tool that enables designers to predict battery cell life expectancy. The free energyAware™ Battery Estimator provides a simulation of total system energy usage, taking into account actual battery source, MCU energy modes, peripherals employed, and external circuit components.

In simulation mode, system battery voltage output is displayed against time (years) in graph format, with the battery capacity rating (mAh), average MCU current consumption (μA), and estimated system operating time shown numerically alongside. A GUI sets up the system simulation, its energy modes, their related operating times and associated peripheral functions, and external component current consumption.

The energyAware Battery Estimator tool also provides users with the ability to store complete simulation projects for future reference. A quick-view demonstration mode allows designers to view and edit a pre-configured typical application simulation.

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This article first appeared in the April, 2012 issue of Embedded Technology Magazine.

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