Trigonometric functions are often needed in embedded real-time software. To fulfill concrete resource demands, different implementation strategies of trigonometric functions are possible.

In this paper we analyze the resource demands of iterative calculations compared to other implementation strategies, using the trigonometric functions as a case study. By analyzing the worst-case execution time (WCET) of the different calculation techniques of trigonometric functions we got the surprising result that the WCET of iterative calculations is quite competitive to alternative calculation techniques, while their economics on memory demand is far superior. Finally, a discussion of the general applicability of the obtained results is given as a design guide for embedded software.