ICheck: Progressive Checkpointing for Intermittent Systems

Wen Sheng Lim, Chia Heng Tu*, Chun Feng Wu, Yuan Hao Chang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Energy harvesting devices powered by ambient energies, instead of batteries, have been drawn lots of attention due to their advantages of energy saving, easy deployment without relying on stable power sources, and smaller sizes, facilitating promising applications, such as environmental and health monitoring. These devices perform the computations intermittently, where the code executions are halted and resumed depending on the availability of the harvested energy. On such devices, the capacitors are present and served as the energy buffers for preserving the program states when sudden power outages occur. Nevertheless, the capacitors have relatively shorter lifetimes, compared with the rest of hardware components on the devices, and larger capacitors, which are desired by the systems requiring complex computations, hamper the achievement of device miniaturization, e.g., for medical implants or smart dust. In this article, we propose a new intermittent checkpointing strategy, iCheck, to tackle the issues raised for the program-state retaining when the capacitors are not functioning correctly (or when the capacitor-less devices are adopted). The proposed iCheck is designed to perform the checkpointing-based program-state preserving progressively with being aware of the power-failure characteristics of the harvested energy source to maximize the progress forwarding and to ensure data consistency while encountering incomplete checkpoints caused by sudden power losses. The proposed design is evaluated with a series of experiments with encouraging results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2224-2236
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2021


  • Capacitor-less systems
  • energy harvesting systems
  • intermittent systems
  • progressive checkpointing


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