What is an Embedded System?

An Embedded System is defined as a system that has Embedded software and computer hardware,which makes it a system dedicated for an application or a product or constitute as a large part of a system.

It is a system where a Micro-controller or Micro-processor based programmable system is embedded in a larger system.An Embedded System is expected to respond and monitor to External environment using Sensors and Actuators.

 

If you look around your world you will find a number of items which will classify as an example of an Embedded System -from TV Remotes,Washing Machines,ATM Card,Music Systems to Sophisticated Systems like Mobiles,LAN Systems,Security Products and Defence equipments!

 

EXAMPLES OF EMBEDDED SYSTEM
EXAMPLES OF EMBEDDED SYSTEM

HOW IT IS DIFFERENT FROM A GENERAL PURPOSE SYSTEM

  • Embedded Systems use Micro-Controllers while General Purpose Systems use Micro-Processors.
  • They use ROM or Flash Memory instead of Primary and Secondary Memory.
  • They use Buttons,Switches and Display Units as Input/Output Interface.
  • They require a Real Time Operating System for scheduling of tasks which enables finishing of tasks within their Deadline.

CHARACTERISTICS OF AN EMBEDDED SYSTEM

  1. It performs Real-Time Operations.Such operations need to be fulfilled within a specified deadline.
  2. It only performs a Dedicated set of Functions.
  3. It requires Lesser Power and requires Restricted Memory.
  4. It incurs Low Manufacturing Costs and major cost of it is required in Application dependent Processor.

EMBEDDED HARDWARE UNITS IN A SYSTEM

block diagram of embedded system




CLASSIFICATION OF EMBEDDED SYSTEMS



1.Small Scale Embedded Systems


It has little hardware and software complexities and involve board-level designs.It is designed with a single 8-bit or 16-bit Microcontroller.
Examples-Washing Machine,Cooking Machine,CD Drives,Printer,Photocopy Machine,TV Remote etc.



2.Medium Scale Embedded Systems


It is designed using a 16-bit or 32-bit Microcontroller or a Digital Signal Processor or RISC Processor. It requires a Real Time Operating system for scheduling of tasks
For Example-Routers,Switches,Bridges,Video Games,SIM Card,Video Games etc.



3.Sophisticated Embedded Systems


It is designed using 32 or 64 bit RISCs.It may require modern development tools or SOC(System-on-Chip).
For Example-Mobiles,Tablets,Wireless LANs,High speed Networking components ,Real-time Video,High speed Security Products etc.

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