San Jose, Calif. - STMicroelectronics and Philips Semiconductors have independently beefed up their lines of the 8051 class of 8-bit microcontrollers, suggesting that the market for this popular MCU is heating up once again.
STMicroelectronics' Turbo microPSD-3300 series of 8051-class flash MCUs boosts peak performance to 10 Mips and adds a rich peripheral set for embedded-control applications. Among the enhancements are a 16-bit programmable counter array, 10-bit-resolution A/D converter channels, and SPI and IrDA interfaces. The general-purpose 8-bit MCUs offer system-level-integration with flash and SRAM densities of up to 256 kbytes and 32 kbytes, respectively, the company said.
Meanwhile, Philips said its LPC90x family of eight-pin MCUs and LPC91x family of 14-pin MCUs deliver the latest microcontroller technology to designers of consumer, automotive and industrial-control products, ranging from battery-powered devices to white goods. With byte-erasable flash memory, enhanced timing functions and on-chip serial communications, designers get lower total system cost and miniature footprint while enjoying additional functionality, the company said.
Ruben Sonnino, vice president and general manager for microPSD controllers at ST (Lexington, Mass.), said performance of the microPSD3300 devices is kept near its 10-Mips peak thanks to an instruction prefetch queue and a branching cache. Also, he said, the JTAG in-system programming interface was enhanced to support JTAG emulation, eliminating the need for a hardware in-circuit emulator.
The devices have dual independent banks of flash memory, up to 32 kbytes of SRAM and more than 3,000 gates of programmable logic with 16 macrocells. The dual-bank flash architecture and programmable decode logic support true read-while-write concurrent access. Memory mapping is handled by an integrated decoding PLD that can assign any flash or SRAM memory segment to any address on any memory page, or bank. Flash memory can be allocated to 8032 code space or data space in almost any proportion as needed. Other peripherals include six PWM channels, an I2C master/slave bus controller, two standard UARTs, supervisory functions and up to 46 general-purpose I/O pins.
Designers can use the 16-macrocell CPLD to replace external glue logic devices, the company said. Common functions forged from the CPLD array include state machines, shifters and counters, keypad and control-panel interfaces, chip-selects for external devices, clock dividers, multiplexers and handshake delay circuits. The devices, which operate over the industrial range of -40 degrees C to 85 degrees C at 5 and 3.3 volts, are sampling now. Volume production is planned for the late fourth quarter in 52-pin and 80-pin thin quad flat packs. The microPSD3333D-40T6 is priced at $6.39 per 1,000 units.
At Philips (San Jose), the LPC90x and LPC91x lines include nine integrated devices. Both families feature 1-kbyte-erasable flash memory organized into 256-byte sectors and 16-byte pages. Any byte can be used as nonvolatile data storage,enhancing the flexibility and performance of the MCU, the company said. Power-down current is specified at 1 microamp typical (5 microamps worst case), suiting the part for battery-operated applications.
"The majority of embedded applications are based on 8-bit architectures," said Geoff Lees, international product-marketing manager. He said the Philips LPC90X family targets these needs by integrating system-level functions, an internal oscillator supporting serial communication, byte-erasable flash, low power consumption and small-outline packages down to eight pins. The LPC90x and LPC91x devices offer up to four 16-bit counter/timers with the option to generate a PWM signal output.
Both are available now. In lots of 10,000, pricing in the TSSOP14 packaging is 75 cents for the LPC912 and 82 cents for the LPC913/LPC914.