LONDON STMicroelectronics NV has announced it is sampling the STM32L series of ultra-low-power ARM Cortex-M3 microcontrollers
The STM32L series combines a dedicated low-leakage 130-nm process technology and optimized power-saving architecture and offers 33 dhrystone MIPS at 32-MHz maximum clock frequency and integrated flash memory densities from 64- to 128-kbyte.
Current consumption varies between 270-nA in standby mode with no real-time clock but with a back-up register preserved to 10.4-microamps in low-power run mode at 32-kHz.
ST appears to have made multiple moves to mimimize power consumption including: implementing a low-power on-chip flash memory, two additional low-power modes, dynamic voltage scaling and operation down to 1.8-V for analog and down to 1.65-V for digital functions.
This multipart strategy is similar to that previously taken by Energy Micro AS (Oslo, Norway) with its EFM32 family of microcontrollers, otherwise known as Gecko. At the time of their introduction in October 2009, they were claimed to offer more than four times the battery life of existing 8, 16 or 32-bit microcontrollers
The STM32L series is sampling now to lead customers, and is priced from $1.86 for the STM32L151 with 64-kbyte flash in the LQFP48 package to $2.81 for the STM32L152 with 128-kbyte in LQFP100, for orders over 10,000 pieces. Volume production is due to begin in Q4 2010.