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International Journal of Reconfigurable Computing
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 430808, 25 pages
Research Article

Sustainable Modular Adaptive Redundancy Technique Emphasizing Partial Reconfiguration for Reduced Power Consumption

Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Central Florida, P.O. Box 2362, Orlando, FL 32816-2362, USA

Received 16 January 2011; Revised 10 May 2011; Accepted 7 June 2011

Academic Editor: Scott Hauck

Copyright © 2011 R. Al-Haddad et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


As reconfigurable devices' capacities and the complexity of applications that use them increase, the need for self-reliance of deployed systems becomes increasingly prominent. Organic computing paradigms have been proposed for fault-tolerant systems because they promote behaviors that allow complex digital systems to adapt and survive in demanding environments. In this paper, we develop a sustainable modular adaptive redundancy technique (SMART) composed of a two-layered organic system. The hardware layer is implemented on a Xilinx Virtex-4 Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) to provide self-repair using a novel approach called reconfigurable adaptive redundancy system (RARS). The software layer supervises the organic activities on the FPGA and extends the self-healing capabilities through application-independent, intrinsic, and evolutionary repair techniques that leverage the benefits of dynamic partial reconfiguration (PR). SMART was evaluated using a Sobel edge-detection application and was shown to tolerate stressful sequences of injected transient and permanent faults while reducing dynamic power consumption by 30% compared to conventional triple modular redundancy (TMR) techniques, with nominal impact on the fault-tolerance capabilities. Moreover, PR is employed to keep the system on line while under repair and also to reduce repair time. Experiments have shown a 27.48% decrease in repair time when PR is employed compared to the full bitstream configuration case.