Based on the ARM926EJ core, Philips Semiconductors' LPC3180 is a standard-part MCU that offers designers a variety of interesting and useful capabilities, including DSP execution, a USB On-the-Go port, Linux support, and a mobile SDRAM interface.
Priced at under $8 in volume quantities, the LPC3180 is among the earliest standard-part 32-bit MCUs to be based on an ARM9 core. The core's vector floating-point coprocessor speeds the execution of signal processing and control-loop algorithms.
Flexible power management delivers high peak performance, especially for floating-point calculations, and can shut down the core power domain while retaining real-time clock and wake-up functionality.
All of the usual power-saving techniques are supported including peripheral clock enabling, PLL switching, clock division, and CPU idle. The LPC3180 also has unique power saving modes. It is fully functional a 0.9V operation, for example, and can be run from the 32 KHz clock by multiplying up.
The LPC3180 also has a separate real time clock domain. The RTC and a small RAM can be kept alive so the RTC can generate a wake-up signal after programmable elapsed time. Philips chip designers also tackled power consumption in the IC design itself.
The LPC3180 was designed for battery-powered operation. Leakage current in the 90-nm libraries used in the design, for example, is actually less than the previous generation 120-nm libraries.
A 1.8 V Mobile SDRAM/DDR interface is just one of four memory interfaces. Others include SD Card and NAND flash. Communications interfaces include USB (device, host, and OTG modes), seven UARTS (one with an IrDA mode), two SPI, interfaces, two I2C interfaces and GP DMA for peripherals.
The on-chip Java byte-code co-processor provides for basic security and authentication applications.
Development tools include ARM's Real View development kit and an LPC8300 development board from Nohau Systems. Compilers are available from ARM, IAR, and Green Hills.
The Philips LPC3180 microcontroller is priced at $7.10 in quantities of 10,000. Samples will be available in March 2006. The development board with Linux will be demonstrated at Embedded World 2006 (booth number 12-566) in Nuremberg, Germany from February 14 to 16, 2006.
More information is available at www.semiconductors.philips.com.