Skip to Main Content
Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) applications often need to be deployed in harsh environments, where the possibility of faults due to environmental hazards is significantly increased, while silicon aging and wearout effects are also exacerbated. For such applications, periodic on-line testing of the WSN nodes is an important step towards correctness of operation. However, on-line testing of processors integrated in WSN nodes has to address the additional challenge of minimum energy consumption, because these devices operate on battery, which usually cannot be replaced and in the absence of catastrophic failures determines the lifetime of the system. In this paper initially we derive analytically the optimal way for executing on-line periodic test with adjustable period, taking into account the degrading behavior of the system due to silicon aging effects but also the limited energy budget of WSN applications. The test is applied in the form of Software-Based Self-Test (SBST) routines, thus we proceed to the power optimized development of SBST routines targeting the transition delay fault model that is well suited for detecting timing violations due to silicon aging. Simulation results show that energy savings for the final SBST routine at processor level are up to 35.4% and the impact of test in the battery life of the system is negligible.