While many companies say their new zoomy product speeds time-to-market, few have as compelling an argument as National Semi with the intro of their configurable sensor analog front-end (AFE) ICs, the LMP9100 and LMP90100. See Configurable sensor AFE solution aims to simplify sensor systems designs, speeds time-to-market, and Analog I/O is alive, well, and soaring, thank you very much for product and news coverage, respectively.
So what's really up? National is creating highly integrated solutions that take advantage of the most common design challenges and requirements--finding the common denominators and then simplifying their solutions. The resulting hardware/software approach allows users to design, configure, and download their sensor solution virtually in minutes compared with the weeks and months currently required.
The sensor ICs add programmability, true continuous background technology and diagnostics to create not only a reliable low-power configurable chip, but also one that is amazingly easy to design. Designers select the sensor and have the ability to adjust the gains, configuration, and speed, set alarms, do diagnostics and save all of the data. National ships a development system to the customer with the IC and the configured data, and customers plug their own sensors into it and start testing.
The new AFE ICs and WEBBENCH® Sensor AFE Designer include technical specs for a multitude of temperature, pressure and chemical sensors. The database features products from Omega Engineering, Honeywell Sensing & Control, Tempco Electric Heater and All Sensors, to name a few.
While the LMP90100 is the industry's first multi-channel, low power 24-bit sensor AFE, the LMP 91000 targets chemical and gas-sensing applications and is an ultra-low power solution.
National is providing the flexibility with this offering for customers to optimize power and harness diagnostic capabilities without disturbing ongoing measurement taking. The LMP90100 IC eases the difficulty and downtime of, and actually minimizes, the frequency of recalibration.
The company is making it easier to get a first cut design with the customer able to choose the sensors that are best for the design. This revolutionary approach from National should make a real impact on a designer's ability to rapidly complete designs, create more designs, and have a clear time-to-market advantage over today's discrete solutions.
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