Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. (TAEC), is a leader that joins forces with technology companies to create breakthrough designs. Its latest breakthrough innovation is a new 32-bit microcontroller (MCU), the TMPM380. An MCU is s a single chip that contains a processor, RAM, ROM, clock and I/O control unit. Microcontrollers are used in automatically controlled products and devices.
The TMPM380 MCU is powered by a 40 Mega hertz ARM® Cortex™-M3 processor core and is superior in performance than the other typically used 8 bit and 16 bit MCUs in industrial or appliance applications. Even then, when it comes to pricing it compares well with the lesser performing alternatives. TMPM380 MCU is exclusively designed to digitally control the high-current circuits generally found in industrial or appliance applications.
The new TMPM380 delivers improved operating individuality, including enhanced energy efficiency and more defined control. On the basis of the superior performance offered by the TMPM380; adding new features to an application has become all the more plausible. For example, confirmation via voice of user commands and settings can be provided by the appliance, in which speech synthesis can now be added. The TMPM380 MCU offers a 5V operation, which delivers better immunity to system noise than a comparable 3V MCU along with easier interfacing with other 5V components.
Toshiba’s TMPM380 MCU uses a devoted pulse-width modulation (PWM) circuit, which can create three-phase control for motor circuits or a 16-bit programmable pulse generator (PPG) control for circuits employing power semiconductors such as IGBTs ( insulated gate bipolar transistors) or FETs (field-effect transistors). The MCU has an on-board 12-bit analog/digital converter that can synchronize with the PWM unit to read back system state at critical times.
“With the TMPM380 MCU, we are bringing a higher level of digital processing to industrial and appliance applications at a lower price point,” said Andrew Burt, vice president of the Imaging and Communications Marketing Group in the ASSP Business unit at TAEC. “By implementing the TMPM380 MCU in their designs, engineers will be able to develop cookers, pumps, compressors, motors or any system controlled by inverters or discrete power devices with better operating characteristics or additional features without increasing system cost.”
Safety and Fault Tolerance Features
The TMPM380 MCU also has several safety and fault acceptance features. This includes software support of the IED 60730B safety standard and oscillator frequency and low voltage detectors. An added benefit of the TMPM380 is that it uses zero-wait state FLASH and SRAM that ensures latency time does not vary in volatile ways. As a result, designers can develop applications that require conclusive timing. This ability is of paramount importance in applications requiring analog processing, where accurate control loop timing is decisive.
In addition, the MCU’s Cortex-M3 core offers fast interrupt response, especially significant in applications where real-time operating systems need to quickly adjust to varying inputs, such as with appliances.
Pricing and Accessibility
Engineering samples of the TMPM380 MCU are available now. Mass production is planned to begin in Q3 2010. The TMPM380 family pricing starts with the TMPM382FSFG (64K Flash / 8K SRAM) at $1.90 per unit in 10,000 unit quantities.