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Real-time systems

embedded systems in industrial environments must meet real-time requirements more and more today. emtrion provides you with different approaches, like the solutions Xenomai and Preempt_RT, to meet the quantitative requirements of real-time systems.

Since these approaches all have different advantages and disadvantages, we analyze all planned environments in advance and match the design to meet its requirements.

What are embedded systems?

Embedded systems are embedded computer systems that fulfill a specific function within a larger system. They are part of a device or machine. In contrast to ordinary computers, embedded systems are limited to specific tasks.


Nowadays, we find them almost everywhere, for example in smartwatches, microwave ovens, construction machinery, transportation systems, medical devices or production facilities. Embedded systems are among the core components of Industry 4.0; they enable the digital automation and control of machines, processes, devices and similar systems.


Characteristics of embedded systems are:

  • Specialized functions: Embedded systems are designed and optimized for a specific task or function.
  • Real-time operation: Many embedded systems must operate in real time, which means they must respond deterministically to events as they occur.
  • Resource constraints: Embedded systems often have to make do with very scarce resources in terms of memory, computing power and energy consumption. They are therefore designed to be particularly efficient.
  • Long service life: Many embedded systems are designed for a long service life and must function reliably for years or even decades.
  • Interface integration: Embedded systems are often closely integrated with the hardware in which they are embedded. They use special interfaces and protocols to communicate with other parts of the system.

Categories and examples of embedded systems

Embedded systems can be categorized according to the requirements placed on them:

Categorization by complexity

  1. simple control systems are used to perform basic control and monitoring tasks. They are usually based on microcontrollers and have limited computing power and memory. Examples are simple household appliances, thermostats and alarm systems.
  2. medium-sized embedded systems can perform more complex tasks. They use more powerful microcontrollers or digital signal processors (DSPs) and have more memory. Examples include industrial control systems, medical devices and simple communication systems.
  3. complex embedded systems: These systems are designed for demanding tasks that require high computing power and high memory capacity. They are based on powerful processors, such as application processors or system-on-chip (SoC) solutions. Examples include driver assistance systems, flight control systems and advanced communication systems.

Categorization by task

The following list is not exhaustive, but shows some important categories:

    • Real-time systems must be able to react to events in real time. They guarantee that certain tasks are completed within a specified time. Real-time systems can occur in different levels of complexity, from simple control systems to complex systems. Examples include automotive control systems, robot control systems and industrial automation systems.
    • Network and communication systems are specifically designed for communication and data exchange between different devices and systems. They are used at different levels of the communication infrastructure, from simple network devices to complex telecommunication systems. Examples include routers, switches and base stations for mobile networks.
    • Mobile and portable embedded systems are specially designed for use in mobile and portable devices and are characterized by low power consumption, low weight and compact design. Examples include cell phones, smartwatches and portable medical devices.

emtrion is your partner for embedded systems of all kinds

We are experts in embedded systems. Whether you need a complex system or a simple solution, we are happy to support you with our wide range of services:

  • Development of customer-specific systems
  • Software development for embedded systems
  • Accessories for embedded systems
  • Training courses and workshops
  • Technical support and consulting for the ongoing operation of your embedded system

Take the first step now

Contact us and make an appointment for a free initial consultation. Together we find out how emtrion can best support you.