welcome to the October 2006 edition of MicroController
Pros Corporation's Embedded News Digest, your source for microcontroller and
embedded system news.
This month's issue:
Due to being sent in 7-bit ASCII, the email version of this
newsletter contained errors in last month's announcement of the
STMicroelectronics STR750 ARM7 Flash microcontrollers. The micro sign on certain
values vanished when the article was converted to plain text. The STR750's
low-power modes consume as little as 12 microAmps in STOP or 10 microAmps in
STANDBY modes, and its fast startup capability allows it to begin executing code
in only 55 microseconds.
Offers ARM7 MCUs Supporting 1GB+ SDRAM, NAND Flash and CF
Atmel Corporation has added three new microcontrollers to its SAM7 family of
ARM7-based USB MCUs. Available in Flash memory densities of 32, 256, and 512
Kbytes, the SAM7SE microcontrollers are the only ARM7-based MCUs to include an
external bus interface (EBI) that provides access to massive amounts of external
NAND Flash, SDRAM, CompactFlash®, SRAM and ROM storage.
The EBI on Atmel's AT91SAM7SE MCUs supports 32-bit NAND Flash, SDRAM and
CompactFlash memories in TrueIDE mode. It includes a NAND Flash controller with
a complementary error-correcting code controller (ECC) that compensates for bits
that are lost by NAND Flash memory over time. A built-in memory controller
offers up to eight configurable chip selects and supports a wide range of 16-
and 32-bit static devices including SRAM, ROM, Flash, memory-mapped LCD and FPGA.
Data-logging applications usually have been implemented with ARM9-based microcontrollers because they were the only MCUs
available that supported SDRAM and NAND Flash memories. Conventional ARM7 MCUs
require intensive bit manipulation through the general-purpose I/O in these
applications, which significantly reduces the available processing power. With
the advent of Atmel's SAM7E family, designers can now use these
smaller-footprint, ARM7-based MCUs.
A major problem when using external memory or logic is that it makes the on-chip
Flash vulnerable to potentially unauthorized external access. Atmel's SAM7E
microcontrollers have several features that secure the code: 1) the MCU cannot
boot from external memory; 2) a Flash security bit disables the Fast Flash
Programming Interface (FFPI) and JTAG access to the on-chip Flash memory; and 3)
a memory protection unit (MPU) can be configured to enforce code execution from
on-chip Flash, thereby preventing execution from an outside source.
Dual-bank Flash memory on the 512 KByte SAM7SE allows true read-while-write
capability, so systems can be reprogrammed while continuing to operate. The
dual-bank memory also protects the system from power failures or other errors
that can cause an unrecoverable system failure.
Modern communications protocols have maximum data rates that conventional ARM7
MCUs cannot support. For example, full-speed USB operates at 12 Mbps and
high-speed SPI operates at 25 Mbps. At only 4 Mbps, conventional ARM7s become so
bogged down that they cannot effectively process data. Like Atmel's other SAM7
MCUs, the SAM7SE-series has an 11-channel peripheral DMA controller (PDC) that
increases on-chip bandwidth to 10 Mbps while maintaining 96% of the CPU's cycles
for application processing. The PDC can store the streaming content directly in
the external NAND Flash or SDRAM without CPU intervention.
The SAM7SE-series includes the same supervisory features found on 8-bit MCUs,
including a brown-out detector, power-on reset, real-time clock, crystal
oscillator, watchdog timer, and three 16-bit timers. Communication interfaces
include three USARTs, USB, TWI, I2S (SSC) and SPI. The device also has four
pulse-width modulators (PWM), an 8-channel, 10-bit analog-to-digital controller
(ADC) and 88 I/O pins.
Traditional MCUs multiplex the peripherals, frequently creating a bottleneck
when there are multiple peripheral accesses. Three individual PIO controllers
avoid this problem. When the EBI is not in use, all peripherals can be accessed
The AT91SAM7SE512 is available now in 128 pin Green QFP or BGA packages and
priced at $8.43 and $9.38, respectively, in quantities of 10,000. The
AT91SAM7SE256 and AT91SAM7SE32 will be available in early 2007.
Crossware Adds C++ Language Support to ARM and ColdFire Suites
Crossware has added C++ language support to its
Suite and its ColdFire
Development Suite. This allows developers to program in both C and C++ to suit the needs of the
particular application under development. As C++ is an object-orientated language, it makes programs
easier to understand, maintain, enhance and upgrade.
Migrating from C to C++ with the Crossware suites is easy. Adding two
instructions to the startup code is sufficient to handle the construction and
destruction of global C++ objects, and C source files can be switched to the C++
language simply by giving them a .CPP extension.
The Crossware Code Creation Wizards are compatible with both C and C++. For
example, if the Code Creation Wizards are used to insert code into a C++ source
file, functions that must remain in C, such as interrupt handlers, are
automatically qualified to keep them as C functions.
Introduces 32-Bit Dual-Core Automotive MCUs
The latest addition to Freescale's MPC55xx portfolio, the MPC5510 family is the
first line of 32-bit automotive MCUs featuring a dual-core architecture with
flexible low-power modes. Built on Power Architecture technology, the MPC5510
family delivers a range of price/performance options and supports extensive
communications capabilities, including the FlexRay, CAN and LIN protocols.
The MPC5510 family scales from single-core MCUs (with 384KB of embedded Flash,
low pin count and reduced feature sets) up to 80MHz dual-core devices (with 1MB
of Flash and advanced communications peripherals). This scalability enables
developers to address a broad range of body electronics applications with a
flexible platform architecture that extends to other members of the MPC55xx
portfolio. Target applications include body control modules (BCMs), gateways
(linking FlexRay to CAN and LIN networks), instrument cluster controllers,
center stack display controllers and smart junction boxes.
Supported by a crossbar switch architecture and 16-channel enhanced DMA,
Freescale's dual-core design makes the MPC5510 family one of the most
efficient, low-power 32-bit automotive MCUs in the market. The MPC5510 family
also enables customers to migrate to higher levels of integration in central
body electronics and connect the body electronics domain to a FlexRay network.
Freescale plans to offer samples of the MPC5510 family in Q1 2007. Package
options will include 144-pin LQFP and 208-pin MAPBGA. A starter kit including an
evaluation board and debug interface is planned for April 2007.
Introduces Cost-Effective S12XS 16-bit MCU Family
Freescale Semiconductor has unveiled a 16-bit MCU family optimized for a broad
range of cost-sensitive automotive body electronics applications. The family
includes six devices designed to give customers flexibility in choosing
different memory, package and cost options to accommodate their application
The MC9S12XS family provides a cost-effective complement to the high-performance
S12XE MCU family. Key features include 32MHz core and bus speed; 64KB, 128KB and
256KB Flash memory options, all with error correction code (ECC); 4KB to 8KB
DataFlash with ECC, used for data or program storage; configurable 8- ,10- or
12-bit ADC capable of 3-microsecond conversion time; support for CAN, LIN and
SPI protocols; and an 8-channel timer with 16-bit counters. Package options
include 48 QFN, 64 LQFP, 80 QFP, and 112 LQFP.
Freescale plans to offer samples of MC9S12XS family devices in Q1 2007.
Freescale Delivers Instrumentation MCU with TFT Display Drive
Freescale Semiconductor has introduced a 16-bit MCU designed for the next wave
in automotive instrumentation clusters. The MC9S12XHZ512 MCU is the industry's
first instrumentation cluster MCU featuring an integrated TFT display driver.
With its on-chip TFT driver, the S12XHZ512 device enables instrumentation
cluster designers to reduce the complexity of their designs and implement
high-quality graphic displays on low-end automotive dashboards in a timely,
cost-effective manner. TFT displays -- standard fare in laptops, cell phones and
other mobile appliances -- are gaining momentum in the mainstream automotive
market as the technology becomes more cost effective. Freescale's latest MCU
addresses the instrumentation cluster market, and TFT applications in
particular, by offering optimal integration and application-specific features.
In addition to supporting TFT displays, the device can drive analog gauges, LCDs and LED displays. Key
S12XHZ512 features for instrumentation cluster designers include 512KB of
on-chip Flash memory (twice that of its S12HZ predecessor), an LCD driver and
stepper motor drivers for gauges.
The S12XHZ512 MCU takes S12HZ family integration a step further by incorporating
Freescale's XGATE module. With its RISC architecture and C-language
programmability, the on-chip XGATE module functions like a dedicated coprocessor
for the main CPU. The XGATE module can drive a
30,000-pixel TFT display directly, without the need for an external graphics
driver IC. With the addition of a low-cost 100K-gate FPGA, the XGATE can drive
an even larger QVGA. In both application examples, designers can achieve an
estimated system cost savings of $2-$4 when compared to using standard
microcontrollers without an integrated TFT driver.
The MC9S12XHZ512 offers the standard features of the existing members of the HZ
family, such as six stepper drives with patented stall-detection capability and
a 32x4 LCD drive.
The MC9S12XHZ512 MCU is available now in sample quantities. Package options
include 112-pin LQFP and 80-pin QFP.
Fujitsu Introduces New 32-bit Microcontrollers with CAN Support
Fujitsu Microelectronics America introduced three new high-performance, 32-bit
microcontrollers for next-generation automotive applications. The new ICs, part
of Fujitsu's MB91460 series, include the MB91F464AA and MB91F465KA, which have
been designed for automotive body control applications. The third MCU, the
MB91F467RA, was designed for on-board entertainment and information systems. All
three MCUs incorporate CAN interfaces and are available now.
The MB91F465KA and the MB91F464AA serve door, seat, air conditioning and other
vehicle body controls. Both include a CAN channel, 32 CAN message buffers and
five UART channels that comply with the LIN standard. Designed for car
navigation, audio, and other information system controls, the MB91F467RA
includes two CAN channels, either 32 or 64 CAN message buffers, and seven
LIN-compliant UART channels. LIN interfaces are used for vehicle door, mirror,
and wiper controls.
All the new MCUs run at clock speeds of up to 80MHz, and have embedded Flash
Fujitsu plans to augment its line of microcontrollers for next-generation,
on-board vehicle systems, with new models planned for dashboard and FlexRay
The MB91F464AA, which comes in 100-pin LQFP packages, is priced at $8.52 each in
volume. The MB91F465KA is available in 120-pin LQFP packages and is priced at
$9.73 each in volume. The 176-pin LQFP MB91F467RA costs $17.04 each in volume.
IBM has announced new, low-power additions to its Power
Architecture line of microprocessors and new processor cores that address the
growing demand for high-performance processors that conserve energy.
The PowerPC 750CL, a 32-bit microprocessor, consumes half the energy as its
predecessor, and performs at speeds ranging from 400MHz to 1GHz. The 750CL
includes a 256KB L2 cache, and is targeted at networking, storage, imaging,
consumer electronic and other high-performance embedded applications.
The PowerPC 970GX, a follow-on to the PowerPC 970FX, supports both 32-bit and
64-bit operations. It features the same power capabilities as its predecessor,
but incorporates twice the integrated L2 cache at 1MB. The range of frequencies
for the 970GX is 1.2 to 2.5GHz, enabling the chip to support high-bandwidth data
processing and algorithmic-intensive computations, making it suitable for
communications, storage, multimedia and graphics-based devices.
IBM also introduced the CPC965, a companion chip to the 970 series of processors
designed to provide I/O connectivity and run at significantly less power than
comparative bridge chips. The highly integrated CPC965 features a very high
speed front bus that operates at up to half the processor frequency. Shipment of
CPC965 samples is planned for March 2007.
IBM also announced three new 32-bit processor cores, including:
The 460S synthesizable core, which will allow designers to select the size L1
and L2 cache sizes and processor local bus (PLB) version necessary for
implementing a single or cache coherent multi-processor design, and can be
manufactured in any fabricator worldwide.
The 464FP H90, which is similar to the 464 H90 hard core, but with an integrated
double precision floating point unit. Both application specific integrated
circuit (ASIC) cores allow customers to more easily customize a chip design and
have it manufactured with IBM or at Common Platform manufacturing facilities at
Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing and Samsung Electronics Co, Ltd.
Advances found within all three processor cores include:
• Low-power capability: The cores are high performance with virtually the same
power requirements as their predecessors. The 464 H90 hard core is expected to
dissipate slightly more than half a Watt (530mW) at 1GHz performance.
Both PowerPC processors and the two ASIC hard cores are manufactured using IBM's
90-nanometer copper processing technology. The microprocessors also feature
• Local bus connectivity: With IBM CoreConnect on-chip system architecture for
easy support of system-on-chip (SoC) customizable designs.
• Application support: Designed for embedded applications including
communications, network, aerospace and defense, consumer electronics, storage
The 464 H90 hard core preliminary design kit is targeted for availability at the
end of the year with the 464FP H90 preliminary design kit targeted in first
quarter 2007. The planned availability of the 460S is second quarter 2007.
Silicon Laboratories announced the C8051F52/3x family of
high-perfomance mixed-signal MCUs in a small footprint, targeted at automotive
The C8051F52x MCU family is the first to combine a +/-0.5% integrated precision
internal oscillator with 8K Flash, 25 MIPS, 12-bit ADC, dedicated LIN 2.0
controller, 16-bit timers/PWM, SPI, UART, and six I/O lines in a small 3 x 3 mm
QFN package. The C8051F53x MCU family has the same feature set but adds 10
additional I/O lines and is offered in 20-pin QFN and TSSOP packages. Both
families integrate additional analog features such as programmable comparators,
voltage regulators, and on-board temperature sensors to further reduce design
complexity. This highly-integrated architecture enables automotive electronics
designers to simplify the design process and reduce bill of materials.
The C8051F52/3x MCU family provides automotive electronics applications with
greater functionality, sensing and control. For example, the integrated LIN 2.0
controller combined with the ultra-high-precision internal oscillator enables
designers to implement LIN master-mode communication networks without the need
for external timing components, further reducing overall system cost. The
C8051F52/3x MCU family also includes power-on-reset, brown-out protection, and a
watchdog timer reset, helping designers to create reliable and durable
electronics systems. In addition, Silicon Laboratories' patented MCU technology
has been field tested and optimized for rigorous automotive specifications and
maintains full performance over the complete automotive temperature range (-40
to +125 degrees C).
Samples of the C8051F52/3x MCU family are available now with fully AEC-Q100
qualified production in the second quarter of 2007. Pricing for the C8051F530
begins at $1.79 and the C8051F520 begins at $1.49, each in quantities of 10,000.
The MSP430 Advanced Technical Conference 2006 will be held
at six locations worldwide starting this month. Attendees will be able to
experience the latest MSP430 MCUs through hands-on labs, collaborate with MSP430
technology experts and third-party vendors, and master the MSP430 through
challenging new labs and technical lectures. The conference offers multiple
tracks of courses taught by MSP430 senior applications engineers, MSP430
customers, third parties and universities. As well as new course material for
previous attendees, the conference will include a series of introductory courses
for those getting started on the MSP430.
Attendees will receive a free Experimenter's Board containing the new
MSP430FG4619 and MSP430F2013 MCUs, an LCD, microphone, speaker, touchpad,
buttons, prototype space, communication interface, JTAG interface, and ports for
plugging in a Chipcon C1100 EVM radio interface.
Event locations and dates:
Dallas, Texas -- November 7-9
Tokyo, Japan -- November 28-29
Sonthofen, Germany -- December 5-7
Shenzhen, China -- December 11-12
Taipei, Taiwan -- December 14-15
Bangalore, India -- January 9-10
To register, go to www.ti.com/atc.
Toshiba America Electronic Components announced the
expansion of its embedded Flash MCU product line with the addition of a new
32-bit CISC MCU based on SuperFlash technology. Designated TMP92FD28FG/DFG, it
is Toshiba's first MCU to combine a high-performance SuperFlash MCU for audio
control with a USB host controller. It is targeted at automotive and consumer
digital-audio applications. In addition, the company introduced a mask-ROM
version of the device.
The TMP92FD28FG/DFG 32-bit MCU combines 512 Kbytes of Flash memory and 32 Kbytes
of RAM. The high-speed, high-performance MCU is based on Toshiba's TLCS-900/H1
processor core and operates with voltages between 3.0V and 3.6V. The minimum
instruction execution time is only 50ns at 20MHz. The built-in USB host
controller supports USB2.0 with full-speed operation of 12Mbps. In addition, it
has a high-speed serial interface and a variety of general interfaces that can
communicate with memory-storage devices, such as SD cards or memory sticks, and
support the main functions required in digital-audio products.
Package options include a 100-pin P-LQFP at 14mm x 14mm with 0.5mm pitch, or a
100-pin P-QFP at 14mm x 20mm with 0.65mm pitch.
Samples of the Flash-memory version, TMP92FD28FG/DFG, are available now, with
volume production slated to begin in December 2006. TMP92FD28FG/DFG is priced at $21.00 in 10,000-piece
quantities. Samples of the mask-ROM version, TMP92CD28FG/DFG, are projected to
be available in the second quarter of 2007 with volume production planned to
commence in the second quarter of 2007. TMP92CD28FG/DFG is priced at $13.00 in 10,000-piece quantities.
Toshiba America Electronic Components announced two new
16-bit MCUs and a new 32-bit MCU based on SuperFlash technology. TMP91FW40FG is
Toshiba's first 16-bit SuperFlash-based MCU to incorporate an LCD controller,
and was designed for electronic metering and similar applications that require
16-bit performance to drive an LCD display. TMP91FW60FG/DFG is a 16-bit device
that offers a combination of 128 Kbytes of Flash memory and 8 Kbytes of RAM plus
5V compliance, making it ideal for robust industrial and white goods
applications. TMP92FD23AFG/ADFG is a 32-bit MCU that incorporates 512 Kbytes of
Flash memory and 32 Kbytes of RAM, making it well suited for many industrial
applications, such as vending machines and industrial control.
The low-voltage, low-power TMP91FW40FG 16-bit MCU combines 128 Kbytes of Flash
memory and 4 Kbytes of RAM with an anti-hypertensive-type LCD driver that can
directly drive from 8 to 40 segments x 4 commons. The high-speed MCU is based on
Toshiba's ultra-low-power TLCS-900/L1 processor core and operates with voltages
between 2.2V and 3.6V. The minimum instruction execution time is only 148ns at
27MHz. Overall power consumption is further reduced by a dual clock and three
standby modes, including a programmable idle option. It also offers an
integrated 4-channel 10-bit ADC, a 4-channel 8-bit timer, a 3-channel 16-bit
timer, and a real-time clock with a calendar function. I/O functions include a
4-channel SIO/UART and 61 I/O ports. Packaging is a compact 100-pin LQFP package
with dimensions of 14mm x 14mm with 0.50mm pitch. A mask ROM version
(TMP91CW40FG) is also available.
The TMP91FW60FG/DFG 16-bit MCU combines 128 Kbytes of Flash memory and 8 Kbytes
of RAM. This low-power MCU is based on Toshiba's TLCS-900/L1 processor core, and
has operating voltage of 4.5V to 5.5V and a minimum instruction execution time
of 200ns at 20MHz. It also provides an integrated 16-channel 10-bit ADC, a
6-channel 8-bit timer, a 5-channel 16-bit timer, and a real-time counter. I/O
functions include a 3-channel SIO/UART, 2-channel I2C/SIO and 83 I/O ports.
Also, it incorporates six banks of program-patch logic. Packaging options
consist of a 100-pin LQFP package with dimensions of 14mm x 14mm with 0.50mm
pitch (TMP91FW60FG) or a 100-pin QFP package with dimensions of 14mm x 20mm with
0.65mm pitch (TMP91FW60DFG). A mask ROM version (TMP91CW60FG/DFG) is also
The TMP92FD23AFG/ADFG 32-bit MCU combines 512 Kbytes of Flash memory and 32
Kbytes of RAM. The high-speed, high-performance MCU is based on Toshiba's
TLCS-900/H1 processor core, and operates with voltages between 3.0V and 3.6V.
The minimum instruction execution time is only 50ns at 20MHz. It also offers an
integrated 12-channel 10-bit ADC, a 6-channel 8-bit timer, a 2-channel 16-bit
timer and a real-time counter. I/O functions include a 3-channel SIO/UART (IrDA
version 1.0 interface mode selectable), a 2-channel I2C interface, and 84 I/O
ports. Additional on-board memory includes 4 Kbytes of mask ROM for booting;
external memory expansion to 16 Mbytes is fully supported. Packaging options
consist of a 100-pin P-LQFP package with dimensions of 14mm x 14mm with 0.50mm
pitch (TMP92FD23AFG) or a 100-pin P-QFP package with dimensions of 14mm x 20mm
with 0.65mm pitch (TMP92FD23ADFG). A mask ROM version (TMP92CY23FG/DFG) is
equipped with 256 Kbytes of ROM and 16 Kbytes of RAM and has a built-in ROM
Toshiba's SuperFlash implementation can be programmed much faster than many
alternative Flash technologies. The availability of three distinct programming
modes -- parallel, serial PROM, and in-system programming -- provides pre- and
post-production programming flexibility. ISP mode allows upgrades and fixes in
the field under control of the user program. This removes the need to switch off
the output to an LCD panel or active output controls.
Samples of all of these devices are available now and they are in volume
production. TMP91FW40FG is priced at $6.00 in 10,000-piece quantities,
TMP91FW60FG is priced at 6.00 in 10,000-piece quantities, and TMP92FD23AFG is
priced at $9.00 in 10,000-piece quantities.
ZiLOG announced the release of the ZLR64400 family of 8-bit
MCU devices, the latest addition to its Crimzon line of infrared-specific
silicon. In common with ZLP12840 OTP (One Time Programmable device), launched in
November 2005, the ZLR64400 features an on-chip ability to learn codes from
other infrared remote controls for consumer products via a learning circuit.
Learning features are fast becoming a standard feature in mid- to high-end
remote controllers. The ability to capture an IR signal from any other remote
control then duplicate it on the "learning" remote enables universal remote
controls to consolidate several single-device remotes and add codes from
newly-purchased devices, with the obvious associated benefits to the consumer.
Once the codes are captured, they are mapped to keys on the universal remote via
As well as an integrated learning capability, the introduction of the ZLR64400
offers extra memory which can house larger amounts of data, and broadens device
coverage for customers. It features 1KB of general-purpose RAM and up to 64 KB
of ROM, offering fast executing, efficient use of memory, sophisticated
interrupts, input/output bit manipulation capabilities, automated pulse
generation/reception, and internal key-scan pull-up transistors.
Available immediately, the ZLR64400 devices are fully software-compatible with
ZiLOG's existing portfolio of Crimzon ROM-based IR microcontrollers, and priced
at $1.72 in 10,000-unit quantities.
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MicroControllerShop (http://microcontrollershop.com) puts convenient and
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MicroController Pros Corporation
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