San Jose, Calif. Atmel Corporation has released four AVR microcontrollers that incorporate a power-saving technology for multi-year battery life in LCD, lighting control, security, home automation, ZigBee and other battery applications. The AVR products are upgraded versions of the 64-pin ATmega325/329 and the 100-pin ATmega3250/3290 microcontrollers.
Incorporating the company's picoPower technology, the 64-pin ATmega329P and 100-pin ATmega3290P devices integrate a complete LCD controller that features a dedicated low-power LCD waveform, an internal contrast control, a flexible selection of drive time and frame frequency, an internal power supply for the LCD voltage, and the ability to operate in power-save mode for low-power consumption. The picoPower AVR microcontrollers consume as little as 340 uA in active mode, 650 nA in power-save mode with real-time counter (RTC), and 100 nA in power-down mode.
Compared to existing market solutions, the internal LCD power supply reduces the number of components in the end product, requires only one external capacitor and is powerful enough to drive a 3.3-V LCD display from a battery voltage of 1.8-V or higher, according to the company.
"Fewer external components make an application less expensive, reduce time to market and simplify production logistics," said Ingar Fredriksen, director of product marketing AVR, in a statement. "Development and debugging is easier and the PCB area is reduced and simplified. For typical LCD applications the picoPower technology with on-chip LCD controller can add years to the battery life."
The ATmega325P and ATmega3250P devices are pin and feature compatible to the ATmega329P and ATmega3290P, without the on-chip LCD controller. The ATmega325P and ATmega3250P are suitable for applications where many general purpose I/O, high connectivity and ultra-low power consumption are essential.
All four microcontrollers feature 32 Kbytes of self-programmable Flash memory, 2 Kbytes of SRAM and 1 Kbyte of EEPROM, 10-bit ADC, 3 timer/counters, USART, SPI, I2C compatible two-wire-interface, and full operation from 1.8 to 5.5 volts with up to 16 MIPS throughput. The ATmega329P can support up to 100 LCD segments and the ATmega3290P supports up to 160 LCD segments.
Atmel's picoPower technology uses a variety of techniques that eliminate unnecessary power consumption in power-down modes. These include an ultra-low-power 32 kHz crystal oscillator, automatic disabling and re-enabling of brown-out detection (BOD) circuitry during sleep modes, a power reduction register that completely powers down individual peripherals, and digital input disable registers that reduces the leakage current on digital inputs.
The AVR picoPower microcontrollers use standard AVR microcontroller development tools. The AVR Studio integrated development environment is available free of charge at Atmel's web site. Click the link for more information about the AVR picoPower microcontrollers.
Volume prices in quantities of 10,000 are $3.54 for the ATmega329P, $3.20 for the ATmega325P, $3.90 for the ATmega3290P and $3.37 for the ATmega3250P. The ATmega329P and ATmega325P in 64-pin TQFP or QFN packages are available now. Samples for the ATmega3290P and ATmega3250P in 100-pin TQFP packages will be available in January 2007. Production quantities will be available in the first quarter 2007 for the ATmega329P and ATmega325P, and second quarter 2007 for the ATmega3290P and ATmega3250P.
Atmel, 1-408-441-0311, www.atmel.com