Personal tools

Zephyr RTOS on PULP

From iis-projects

Jump to: navigation, search


Status: Available


Real-time systems are systems that need to guarantee certain time constraints such as for example responding within a certain time frame. This means that computations not only need to be logically correct but also the physical instant of the result computation has to meet a particular timing constraint.

Regular general-purpose operating systems such as Linux are often not designed to ensure that real-time constraints are respected.

To address that problem several so called real-time operating systems have been developed in the last decades and used in several fields where the design of safety-critical systems matters (automotive and aerospace above all). Among these, Zephyr OS [1] is a promising scalable real-time operating system with small memory footprint designed for resource-constrained systems following modern security practices. It supports a lot of architectures such as ARM (Cortex series), MIPS, SPARC, AMD64, and RISC-V. The development model is very similar to the linux kernel: The kernel sources, drivers and any bootstrapping code are part of the same project giving a nice out-of-the-box experience.

ControlPULP is an open-source HW/SW platform based on PULP [2], a parallel embedded MCU implementing the RISC-V ISA. ControlPULP has been developed to serve as an integrated power controller for HPC processors [3]. In this scenario, a timely response from multiple MIMO interfaces is required to be able to track and set the operating point of the controlled system in a workload-aware manner.

Currently, we already support FreeRTOS [6] in ControlPULP as real-time operating system


The goal of this project is to port Zephyr OS to ControlPULP:

  • Review and study ControlPULP SystemVerilog code [4]
  • (Optional) If you prefer to develop on an FPGA set up the ControlPULP FPGA flow
  • Review and study ZephyrOS. You can have a look how previous ports were done [5]
  • Port the kernel and interrupt drivers to support ControlPULP
  • Add drivers for various peripherals (UART, SPI, I2C, ...)
  • Do various comparisons against FreeRTOS


  • 15% Literature / architecture review
  • 65% Software layer
  • 20% Evaluation


  • Experience with digital design in SystemVerilog as taught in VLSI I
  • Basic knowledge of operating systems
  • Knowledge of C programming language and unix tooling as from previous bachelor/master courses




[3] ControlPULP: A RISC-V Power Controller for HPC Processors with Parallel Control-Law Computation Acceleration