Debugging and Adding New Functionality to DSP Based on TI Sitara MCU

Project in Nutshell: We debugged and added new features to our client's firmware for the digital signal processor based on the Sitara AM2434 MCU from TI. Updates included setting up network time protocol service (NTP) for time synchronisation, updating the firmware over Ethernet, and implementing an inter-core communication mechanism to improve the DSP performance.  

Client & Challenge

A leading provider of innovative FPGA-based solutions in high-frequency technology and signal processing approached us for assistance in bridging up, debugging, and adding new features to their firmware.


1. Software development

The development was conducted on the AM243x Evaluation Module TMDS243EVM by Texas Instruments with the Sitara ARM processor on board. 

The client's software works as follows: 

  • FreeRTOS, a real-time operating system, runs the multi-thread application; 
  • each thread processes commands received through UDP and TCP connections;
  • commands trigger operations: controlling external peripherals or writing to memory;
  • after executing commands, the application sends responses in JSON format back to the sender; 
  • threads are executed on different cores using the inter-processor communication (IPC) mechanism.

Promwad engineers fixed the existing issues and added new features: 

  • Fixed application crashes and hangs by debugging RTOS synchronisation mechanisms to control access to shared resources for restructuring command processing tasks. 
  • Configured network time protocol (NTP) to synchronise the device in real-time.
  • Upgraded software over Ethernet without shutting down or rebooting the device. 
  • Ensured storing of non-volatile parameters such as device IP, serial number, and firmware version on an embedded electrically erasable programmable read-only memory (EEPROM). 
  • Arranged interaction between cores of the device and ported tasks to other cores.

Technology stack: Ethernet, LWIP, TCP/IP, Code Composer Studio v12.5, MCU-PLUS-SDK-AM243X.

Business Value 

Firmware debugging and the introduction of new functions have resulted in our client receiving a correctly working application, which will ultimately improve the DSP's performance and reliability.

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