Sunnyvale, Calif. — In speeds ranging from 100 MHz to 400 MHz for high performance, low power consumption (typically 0.6W) networked industrial applications, Applied Micro Circuits Corp. has launched its newest PowerPC-based processor called the PPC405EZ.
Key to the performance of the PPC405EZ are its on-board 32 Kbytes of SRAM, CRAM-compatible external bus with arbitration, 64-bit on-chip bus, along with a fully configurable Chameleon timer, IEEE1588-compliant Fast Ethernet, USB and CAN.
Networking has found its way into even the most deeply embedded devices in the industrial, scientific, and commercial market segments, according to AMCC. Applications that were once the exclusive domain of 8-bit and 16-bit MCUs performing only a few tasks embedded in isolated equipment are now often accomplished by tightly networked, intelligent devices with multi-tasking capabilities. These new systems require higher performing 32-bit SoCs to handle the additional tasks of networked communications, more sophisticated processing algorithms, and more complete operating systems such as Linux, while still providing the low cost and extended temperature operation required by these classes of equipment.
Traditional sub-100 MHz 32-bit RISC-based and DSP-based MCUs, burdened with their slow speed on-chip busses and flash memory, struggle under this new additional communications and processing workload. Even if these traditional flash-based MCUs can be pushed to higher clock speeds, the on-chip Flash and narrow 32-bit bus speeds do not scale: this usually results in little data and I/O throughput improvement.
The PPC405EZ’s connectivity package consists of one fast Ethernet port with an integrated IEEE1588 controller, three USB 1.1 ports with integrated PHYs, and two CAN 2.0b ports. The device also has an 8 input 10-bit ADC, a 10-bit DAC, and a “set-and-forget” 15 channel Chameleon Timer/PWM controller that significantly offloads CPU and software involvement. The IEEE1588 time base function is fully integrated directly into these key analog and timer functions to optimize performance and eliminate CPU involvement in capturing, triggering and time-stamping real-time events in devices deployed across entire networks.
The configurable Chameleon Timer enables designers to mimic or construct virtually any type of timer architecture and produce complex deterministic timing functions without resorting to specialized complex scripting or DSP programming language expertise. It offloads the CPU and software from being involved in even the most complex timing and waveform generation algorithms, thereby freeing the CPU and bus bandwidth for use elsewhere in the customer’s application. Examples of these complex real-time functions include PWM and space vector PWM functions with non-overlap times, quadrature encoder sensing and control, programmable “deadband” intervals, pulse period measurement, 48-bit input capture function, 48-bit output compare function, and IEEE1588 timestamps.
The PPC405EZ is packaged in 324-pin 23 mm x 23 mm EPGA and available in industrial (-40 C to +85 C) and extended (-40 C to +105 C) temperature range. The PPC405EZ’s “roomy” 1mm ball pitch results in very inexpensive and reliable printed circuit board layouts that avoid blind vias. Cost-effective 150 to 600 DMIPS-class systems - ranging from a two-chip solution (PPC405EZ+SPI boot device), to Linux-on-a-chip and multi-chip multi-master implementations - can be built based on the PPC405EZ SoC fed by a single 33-50 MHz oscillator and consuming as little as 0.6 Watts.
The AMCC PPC405EZ networked industrial processor is expected to be available in sample quantities in the fourth quarter of 2006, at a suggested resale list of $15.00 in quantities of 10,000 for the 133 MHz industrial temperature version (-40 C to +85 C).
An evaluation kit for the PPC405EZ will also be available in the fourth quarter to facilitate product evaluation and project development. Through the AMCC Partners Program, AMCC’s PowerPC embedded processors are supported by an ecosystem of industry-leading suppliers of operating systems, hardware/software development tools, embedded software, board-level products, and system design services.
For full details of the products and services available through the AMCC Partners Program, or to browse support available for a specific processor, please visit: www.amcc/embedded/partners.
Applied Micro Circuits Corp. 800-935-2622