LONDON – Chipus Microelectronics SA, a Brazilian startup licensor of analog and mixed-signal circuits, has said it has integrated a set of analog circuits with the ZR16, a proprietary Brazilian microcontroller.
The ZR16 is a joint development between Chipus (Florianopolis, Brazil) and Santa Maria Design House SA (Santa Maria, Brazil). The microcontroller includes A-to-D conversion, an internal oscillator and EEPROM and RAM memories.
"The chip targets control, automation, lighting, and appliances applications, with a processor characterized by its simplified architecture and reduced number of instructions," said Roberto Pacheco, SMDH manager, in a statement issued by Chipus. The integrated circuit prototype is due to be tested in December and will also be subject to field tests in the products of Exatron (www.exatron.com.br), a company based on the state of Rio Grande do Sul, southern Brazil.
Besides the testchip, a full set of software supporting tools such as a compiler, a programmer and a simulator are being developed to allow Brazilian electronic companies to use the microcontroller as soon as its production starts.
The microcontroller intellectual property belongs to Chipus, SMDH and C&P, and the integrated circuit itself will be commercialized by a third party or, in another business model, the circuit blocks will be licensed to other design houses as cores to be integrated in their chips, Chipus said.
"In this so-far successful joint development, SMDH provided the digital front-end synthesis, verifications and back-end implementation, while we contributed with the analog IPs and the whole chip integration in X-Fab's 0.35-micron technology," said Murilo Pessatti, CEO of Chipus.
Chipus Microelectronics, founded in 2008, specializes in data converters, analog front-end and power management solutions for fabless semiconductor companies and chip integrators. SMDH also began activities in 2008.
Certainly a gutsy way. I appreciate the research effort to rethink the whole strategy and come up with a different product at this time when we already have matured micro controller products. Future. We might see many front end elements going inside the microcontrollers and if they are produced in larger volumes then even the prices will come down drasticlly.
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