This paper explains timing factors and solutions for reducing power while maintaining precision in low power systems, as required for measurement and monitoring applications. It explores analog front-end timing, ADC timing, and digital interface timing. It will also give examples of analysis control evaluation (ACE) timing tools to help system designers and software engineers visualize impacts or settings on measurement timing.

We begin with an overview of the two main ADC types, and will focus primarily on sigma-delta architecture. We will be focusing on precision low power measurements and signals (such as temperature, pressure, and flow) with measurement bandwidths of below 10 kHz, although a lot of the topics covered can be applied for wider bandwidth measurement systems.