Welcome to the December 2008 edition of MicroController
Pros Corporation's Embedded News Digest.
As many of our long term readers have noticed, releases of the "Embedded News
Digest" have become rather irregular during the course of 2008, as we've become
simply too busy keeping up with the rapid growth of our webstore -
microcontrollershop.com. We have therefore decided to stop all of our other
activities and concentrate our resources on our e-commerce business. This
unfortunately also means that we will stop publishing the Embedded News Digest -
this will be the last and final edition.
We're planning on launching a more interactive online platform that will
carry the latest embedded news and in addition provide a forum for discussion
and support on everything microcontroller related. We'll send out an email
announcement to you once this becomes available.
I want to take this opportunity to thank you for being loyal readers of the
Embedded News Digest. I wish you a wonderful Holiday Season and a Happy
New Year from all of us here a MicroController Pros Corp.
We have added close to a 1000 new products since the last newsletter: New
Universal programmer line from Wellon, PIC production ICSP Gang programmers
from Softlog Systems, several new ARM boards, new AVR programmers and lots of
new GSM, Zigbee & sensor stuff. For a listing of all new products, see:
This month's issue:
Atmel Launches New Family of Secure MCUs for Machine-to-Machine Communication
Atmel Corporation has announced the availability of its new AT90M family of
secure microcontrollers. Based on the 8-/16-bit RISC core allowing single-cycle
instruction execution, the first device, AT90M25672RU, embeds 72 Kbytes of
EEPROM data memory, 6 Kbytes of RAM and 256 Kbytes of ROM program memory,
providing high density and flexibility. It shares the same common features of
Atmel's secureAVR family, thus offering an easy way of migration in terms of
code binary compatibility, development tools and reference designs. The AT90M
family offers extended guarantees to withstand extreme environmental conditions
such as temperature, humidity or vibrations. A tiny DFN-8 packaging solution has
been developed to comply with physical integration requirements.
Atmel's AT90M product family, when embedded in Machine-to-Machine modules, is
tailored to serve telemetry, tracking management, monitoring, home security and
remote control applications.
Samples for the AT90M25672RU are available now in DFN8 and QFN44 packages.
Volume production will start in December 2008. Prices start at $1.20 for 10k
Atmel Extends secureAVR Family for Banking Card Applications
Atmel Corporation has announced the introduction of its new AT90SC16018RU secure
microcontroller to extend its product offering for banking card applications.
The large ROM memory in the device allows customers to implement sophisticated
applications such as CPA (Common Platform Application) for the EMV banking, SDA
(Static Data Authentication) market and makes this chip perfectly suited for
cost-sensitive applications such as medium-end contact banking cards.
Based on Atmel's optimized 8-/16-bit RISC secureAVR CPU architecture, the
AT90SC16018RU features on-chip high-density, well tailored memories: 16 Kbytes
of EEPROM, 160 Kbytes of user-ROM, and 4 Kbytes of RAM. This product has been
designed to meet the security standards of Common Criteria EAL5+ and EMVCo. It
shares the same common features with Atmel's secureAVR family, including
dedicated hardware for protection against SPA/DPA/SEMA/DEMA attacks as well as
advanced protection against physical attacks.
AT90SC16018RU samples are available now. Volume production will start in Q1
2009. Prices start at $0.60 for 10k units.
Atmel Launches New AVR MCU for Smart Card Reader Applications
Atmel Corporation has announced the introduction of its new AVR microcontroller
designed for smart card reader applications. Based on the AVR 8-/16-bit RISC
core allowing single cycle instruction execution, the AT90SCR100 embeds 4 Kbytes
of EEPROM for data, 4 Kbytes of SRAM and 64 Kbytes of programmable Flash.
The AT90SCR100 offers a comprehensive set of interfaces such as ISO7816 (Class
A,B,C supported), USB full Speed 2.0 Device and Host, USART, and TWI to address
any applications that interface to synchronous, asynchronous and USB smart
cards. In addition, an SPI serial interface plus a dedicated High Speed SPI
interface (up to 20Mbps at 20MHz) have been implemented. Respectively combined
with an RF front end and/or with a fingerprint sensor, the AT90SCR100 is ideally
suited to contactless and/or Biometric reader applications. With its 38 GPIOs in
its high pin count configuration (64-pin package), it can also address all USB
Keyboards integrating the smart card reader functionality.
Thanks to its integrated hardware AES 128/256 bits engine that leaves complete
availability of the Flash for the end-user application, the AT90SCR100 is the
first smart card reader microcontroller on the market to offer cryptographic
capability. Consequently, communication through secure channels can be performed
without calling for any CPU resource during the ciphering operations.
Samples for the AT90SCR100 are available now. Packages are available in 32-pin
QFN, 64-pin QFN and 64-pin QFP. Volume production will start in May 2009. Prices
start at $3.00 for the 64-pin version and at $1.90 for the 32-pin package in
Systems Releases CMX-RTX RTOS for Renesas R32C Family
CMX Systems has announced the availability of its CMX-RTX real-time operating
system for the Renesas R32C series processors. Support for the R32C family is in
addition to CMX-RTX and CMX-Tiny+ ports available for Renesas processor families
including the Renesas H8/300, H8/300H, H8S, M16C, M32C and SH series. Ports are
available for Renesas and IAR tools.
CMX-RTX is a truly pre-emptive, multi-tasking RTOS supporting a wide variety of
8-, 16-, 32-bit microcomputers, microprocessors, and DSPs. CMX-RTX offers the
smallest footprint, the fastest context switching times, and the lowest
interrupt latency times available on the market today. RTOS functionality
provided in CMX-RTX includes: task management, message management, queue
management, system management, event management, memory management, resource
management, semaphore management and timer management.
CMX-RTX includes the RTOS Configuration Manager, an intuitive Windows GUI which
simplifies RTOS configuration. The CMXKAware option provides the developer with
the ability to view their programming applications running under the RTOS via
In-Circuit Emulators, Simulators or ROM Monitors and to view kernel objects
including tasks, mailboxes and cyclic timers.
All CMX products feature full source code, no royalties, and free technical
support and updates with every purchase.
Releases Modular ARM7 Developmemt Tools
Crossware has released a modular set of tools for the ARM7 microcontrollers.
Based upon their ARM Development Suite, the modular system breaks out the
components required to support various families of ARM7 chips. This allows
developers on a limited budget to benefit, for their chosen ARM7 variants, from
all of the advanced features of the Crossware tools.
A base package provides the tool chain, including an advanced C/C++ compiler,
linker and standard libraries, as well as the ARM core simulator, source-level
debugger, Jaguar USB JTAG debugger interface, and the Embedded Development
Developers can then select modules to add to this base package that will provide
additional features specific to the variants supported by the modules. The
additional features provided include C header files for the specific variants,
Code Creation Wizards that will generate configuration and application code for
the on-chip peripherals, simulator extensions to simulate on-chip peripherals,
and debugging extensions for programming on-chip and, where appropriate,
If a developer decides to target a different ARM7 family, then the module for
that family can be purchased and added to the existing environment.
Modules are currently available for the Atmel SAM7 chips, the LPC21xx/LPX22xx
chips from NXP, and the STR71x/STR73x/STR75x chips from STMicroelectronics.
As with Crossware's full suite, developers can download updates for 12 months
from the date of purchase, thereby ensuring that they can benefit from any
enhancements that are added during this period.
8-bit Automotive MCUs Target Asian Markets
Freescale Semiconductor has introduced an S08 MCU family designed for
entry-level instrument clusters and heating, ventilation and air conditioning
(HVAC) controls. Featuring an integrated LCD driver, the new 8-bit S08LG32 MCUs
provide a cost-effective solution for LCD-based body applications in value-line
vehicles popular in emerging markets, such as India and China. The devices can
be used in entry-level automobiles, as well as two/three-wheeled vehicles
including motorcycles and scooters.
Freescale's S08LG32 family includes five automotive-qualified 5-volt devices
that offer a range of Flash memory sizes (up to 32 KB) and package options
scaling from 48 to 80 pins. The on-chip LCD driver supports displays with up to
296 segments (8x37 or 4x41 LCD configuration). The highly integrated 8-bit MCUs
are designed to deliver enhanced electromagnetic interference (EMI) and
electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) performance.
Freescale plans to offer cost-effective MC9S08LG32 family demonstration boards
and instrument cluster reference designs in Q2 2009.
Initial samples of the S08LG32 MCUs are available today to selected automotive
customers. General market support is planned to be available in the second
quarter of 2009.
Freescale Delivers Single-Chip Solution for Next-Generation Automotive Gateways
Freescale's new 32-bit MPC5668G dual-core Power Architecture device supports the
automotive industry's leading communications interfaces, such as CAN, LIN,
Ethernet, Media Local Bus and FlexRay technology.
Samples of MPC5668G are planned to be available to selected customers in
Infineon SLE 78 Security MCU Brings Revolutionary Digital Security Features to
Chip Card Industry
Infineon Technologies announced availability of its latest SLE 78
high-security microcontroller family that introduces a hardware security
technology called Integrity Guard. With the Integrity Guard, for the first time
in chip card history, security microcontrollers are equipped with comprehensive
error-detection capabilities and full on-chip encryption over the complete data
path -- the dual-CPU, all memories (EEPROM, Flash, ROM, RAM), caches and the
buses. The first principle of Infineon's Integrity Guard is that no plain data
is available on the chip.
The dual-CPU approach allows error detection even while processing, and detects
whether a calculation was performed without errors. After detecting an error or
the attempt of an attack, the microcontroller can decide whether the operation
is continued or an alarm is to be triggered and the operation automatically to
Today, six members of the SLE 78 security microcontroller family are available
in sample quantities. These devices differ in EEPROM size and offer memory
capacities between 36 kBytes and 144 kBytes. Volume production is expected to
begin in Q1 2009.
Maxim 16-bit MAXQ2010 MCU Extends Battery Life in Power-Sensitive Applications
Maxim Integrated Products has introduced the MAXQ2010, a 16-bit mixed-signal
microcontroller with a unique power-saving stop mode. Stop mode reduces power
consumption to 370nA typical and 6.5uA maximum at +85 degrees C, thus extending
the life of battery-powered devices. Designed on a RISC architecture, the
MAXQ2010 balances high-speed execution (up to 10 MIPS at 10MHz) and data
sampling (up to 312ksps ADC conversion at 12 bits) with a low-power active-mode
current (3.1mA, typical, at 10MHz). An integrated regulator allows direct
operation from a single lithium coin cell at 2.7V to 3.6V.
With its many integrated analog and digital capabilities and its multiple
power-saving modes, the MAXQ2010 is an optimized single-chip solution for
battery-powered data acquisition applications. The device's low-power stop mode
makes it especially valuable in equipment that spends the majority of its life
inactive, only waking up once every few minutes to take measurements. Typical
examples include many types of sensors, data acquisition systems, or
The MAXQ2010 includes a 12-bit ADC capable of data conversion at up to 312ksps.
Samples are taken from up to eight analog inputs which can be selected as
single-ended inputs and/or differential input pairs. The ADC includes a 1.5V
+/-2% voltage reference and can be configured to automatically capture and
buffer sequences of up to 16 samples without processor intervention.
The MAXQ2010 provides additional features critical for portable, battery-powered
applications. An integrated LCD controller can drive up to 160 segments directly
in a 1/4-muxed configuration. A supply-voltage monitor measures the power supply
against a programmable threshold from 2.7V to 3.5V in 0.1V increments, enabling
an application to detect low power and notify the user to replace the battery.
To further reduce system costs, the MAXQ2010 uses a low-cost 32kHz crystal to
generate the 8.389MHz system clock and enable the real-time clock (RTC)
peripheral. The RTC provides programmable subsecond and time-of-day alarms,
which can be used to wake up the microcontroller from stop mode to perform
functions at programmable time intervals.
The MAXQ2010 is packaged in a 100-pin LQFP and operates over the -40 to +85
degrees C temperature range. Prices start at $2.95 in 10,000-unit quantities.
Technology Enhances Mid-range 8-bit PIC Core
Microchip Technology has announced an enhancement to the microcontroller
architecture supporting Mid-range 8-bit PIC12 and PIC16 MCUs. The enhanced core
provides numerous technical improvements, including more program and data
memory, a deeper/enhanced hardware stack, additional reset methods, 14
additional programming instructions including C efficiency optimizations
resulting in code size reductions, increased peripheral support, reduced
interrupt latency, and other enhancements.
The enhanced core builds upon the best elements of the existing ,mid-range core
and provides additional performance, while maintaining compatibility with
existing mid-range products for true product migration. The enhancements provide
users with a boost of performance of up to 50% and code-size reductions of up to
40% for various algorithms and functions. Additional feature enhancements
include increased memory support with program Flash addressability up to 56 KB
and Data RAM up to 4 KB.
Third-party compiler support for devices utilizing the enhanced core will be
provided by HI-TECH Software, CCS, microEngineering Labs and Byte Craft Limited.
The first devices based upon the enhanced 8-bit Mid-range PIC MCU core are
expected to roll out Calendar Q1 2009.
Microchip Announces USB Software Stack with OTG Support for 16-bit MCUs
Microchip has announced a USB-IF certified upgrade to its free USB software
stack that includes On-The-Go (OTG) support for its 16-bit PIC24F
microcontrollers, and a variety of new features for its 8-, 16- and 32-bit USB
PIC MCUs. The stack is available for free download now at
including a highly optimized library and full source code. OTG stack
certification for the 32-bit PIC32 family is expected in early Q1 2009.
Renesas to Release SH74504 and SH74513 MCUs for Automobile Driver-Assist System
Renesas has announced the SH74504 and SH74513, 32-bit MCUs with on-chip Flash
memory for driver-assist system control to achieve active safety in automotive
applications and offering substantially better performance than comparable
earlier products. Sample shipments will begin in February 2009 in Japan.
The SH74504 and SH74513 are built around the SH-4A CPU core, the most powerful
in the Renesas Technology SuperH Family. Fabricated using 90-nm process
technology, they operate at 240 MHz, which is the fastest in the industry for
MCUs with on-chip Flash memory. They provide ample memory capacity, combining 2
Mbytes (SH74504) or 1.5 Mbytes (SH74513) of embedded Flash memory and 512 Kbytes
of on-chip SRAM. This provides support for driver-assist systems offering
enhanced performance by enabling high-speed processing of the large volumes of
sensor data required by obstacle detection and collision-avoidance applications.
These MCUs offer advanced on-chip in-vehicle networking capability with
five-channel CAN, and, in the SH74504 two-channel FlexRay, a communication
protocol for next-generation vehicle control applications.
Both the SH74504 and SH74513 have an on-chip floating-point processing unit (FPU)
with a maximum operating frequency of 240 MHz. The FPU supports single- and
double-precision calculations and achieves a maximum operation performance of
1.68 GFLOPS in single-precision mode. Hardware support for vector and sine or
cosine arithmetic computations translates into high-speed calculation
In addition to their large on-chip Flash memory capacity, both MCUs consume only
1.5 Watts of power when operating at 240 MHz.
The three-channel direct RAM input interface (DRI) function supports direct
parallel connection at up to 40 Mbps from a CMOS camera with a maximum of wide
video graphics array (WVGA) resolution to on-chip SRAM as a camera interface for
the lane departure warning system (LWDS), and a one-channel I2C function is
provided for camera settings. The full 512 Bytes of on-chip SRAM is sufficient
to store the data for an entire photo, thereby contributing to more compact
system size and reduced cost.
The on-chip peripheral functions include a parallel DAC controller circuit for
controlling the D/A converter required by a driver-assist system employing
milliwave radar, a parallel selector circuit for channel control of a high-speed
A/D converter, a DRI circuit ideal for capturing data from a high-speed external
A/D converter, a TOU timer for controlling a brushless DC motor for mechanical
milliwave scanning control, and a 65-channel ATU-IIIS (Advanced Timer Unit III)
multifunction timer unit suitable for timing control.
The SH74504 and SH74513 incorporate a direct RAM input (DRI) and direct RAM
output interface (DRO) to minimize performance drag on the MCU's CPU caused by
CPU-to-CPU communications functions, a bus controller that supports selection of
the optimal data bus width (8, 16, 32 bits) when utilizing an external bus, and
serial communication interfaces with FIFO
There is also an on-chip direct memory access controller (DMAC) supporting data
transfer to external bus areas to enable management of the above communication
functions. By combining these functions, it is possible to utilize the
performance of the SH-4A CPU to the full and to achieve improved system
TI's New CC430 Platform Makes Low-Power RF System Design Easy
Texas Instruments has announced the new CC430 technology platform, offering the
industry's lowest power, single-chip RF solution for microcontroller-based
applications. By reducing system complexity, shrinking package and PCB size by
up to 50 percent and making RF design easy, the CC430 platform helps advance
applications including RF networking, energy harvesting, industrial monitoring
and tamper detection, personal wireless networks and automatic metering
The unique blend of TI's 16-bit MSP430F5xx MCU and low-power RF transceiver
draws a low enough current to enable battery-operated wireless networking
applications that operate without servicing for 10 years or longer, a critical
factor for customers in the metering industry.
An extensive MSP430 MCU peripheral set will be available for CC430-based devices
including digital and analog peripherals like a 16-bit ADC and low-power
comparators that provide high performance -- even during RF transmissions -- and
consume no power when not in operation. These peripherals also speed design by
integrating functions such as an AES accelerator that encrypts and decrypts data
sent wirelessly for more secure alarm and industrial monitoring systems. An
additional choice for designers will be the on-chip LCD controller, contributing
to further reduce cost and size for LCD-based applications.
Initial devices in the CC430 platform will be based on the 16-bit MSP430F5xx MCU
and the sub-1GHz CC1101 RF transceiver. TI's low-power RF transceivers offer
selectivity and blocking to ensure reliable communications even in noisy
The first CC430 samples will be available in limited quantities in 1Q09 with
mass-market sampling and further device introductions scheduled for later in the
year. Pricing for initial devices will start at less than $2 in volume.
Releases TMS570F MCUs with Dual ARM Cortex-R4F CPUs
Texas Instruments has introduced the TMS570F microcontroller, the first ARM
Cortex-R4F processor based floating-point, lockstep dual-core automotive MCU.
Based on two Cortex-R4F processors, the TMS570F MCUs were designed specifically
for applications required to meet the IEC 61508 SIL3 or ISO26262 ASIL D safety
The TMS570F MCU allows automotive system designers to implement both single- and
double-precision floating-point math depending on performance requirements.
Accelerated multiply, divide and square-root functions enable physical
model-based control through development environments like The Mathworks Real
Time Workshop and ETAS ASCET.
The Cortex-R4F processor-based MCU is designed to meet error-free automotive
safety standards and provide system-wide protection through seamless support for
error detection from the processor, through the interconnect and into the
memories. The error correction code logic is integrated into the Cortex-R4F CPU,
which protects both the memories and buses. Because ECC is evaluated within the
CPU, the system takes advantage of the eight-stage pipeline to allow time for
ECC evaluation with no performance impact. In the event of a memory error, the
ECC logic will correct it, rather than just communicating the error and stopping
The TMS570F MCU platform uses two identical ARM Cortex-R4F processors combined
with an initial 2 Mbytes of on-chip Flash memory. Industry standard peripherals
include a FlexRay protocol controller, up to three CAN and two LIN modules along
with TI's high-end timer co-processor, and two 12-bit analog-to-digital
MicroController Pros Corporation (µCPros) is an authorized
distributor for many microcontroller tool vendors, which enables us to offer you
a large selection of Microcontroller Development Tools for almost any major
MicroControllerShop (http://microcontrollershop.com) puts convenient and
secure online shopping, feature- and price-comparison on your computer's
desktop. Microcontroller Development Tools featured at the
include: In-Circuit Debuggers & Programmers, Universal programmers, Development
and Prototype Boards, Sensors, Wireless modules,
microcontroller starter kits and embedded evaluation boards for various
microcontroller architectures and manufacturers.
copyright 2008 by
MicroController Pros Corporation