Piccolo 32-bit microcontrollers bring real-time control for greater energy efficiency
Texas Instruments (TI) launched the 32-bit series of TI Piccolo TMS320F2802x/F2803x microcontrollers (MCU) starting at less than $2 in volume. With architectural advancements and enhanced peripherals in package sizes starting at 38-pins, they bring 32-bit real-time control to applications typically unable to justify the cost.
Houston, TX – Texas Instruments Inc. (TI) Piccolo F2802x/F2803x microcontrollers feature architectural advancements and enhanced peripherals in package sizes starting at 38-pins to bring 32-bit real-time control to applications typically unable to justify the cost. Real-time control offers greater system efficiency and precision through implementation of advanced algorithms for industrial, consumer, and automotive applications such as solar power micro-inverters, LED lighting, white goods appliances, and hybrid automotive batteries.
Texas Instruments Piccolo F2802x/F2803x 32-bit microcontrollers are less than $2 each in volume. Lower cost translates into more applications.
“The combination of 32-bit performance, enhanced peripherals and small package sizes allows designers to add real-time control and system management using just one microcontroller to applications that could not afford it previously,” said Keith Ogboenyiya, TMS320C2000 marketing manager. “We named these devices Piccolo because of the small size and price that they offer our customers. They also double the number of C2000 options and build on TI’s growing MCU portfolio.”
Piccolo F2802x/F2803x controllers can replace multiple electronic components to lower overall system cost, enabling advanced power electronics management. In a variable frequency air conditioning unit, a single F2802x/F2803x controller can precisely control two electric three-phase motors and perform power factor correction (PFC) calculations. Currently required in approximately 30% of the marketplace, PFC improves efficiency of the load to make best use of the power from the utility.
For commercial and industrial lighting applications, LED technology can bring up to 50% higher energy efficiency compared to traditional high-pressure sodium lamps. F2802x/F2803x-based LED control systems offer intelligent current control and easy system networking to bring down complexity and the cost of managing color mixing and temperature control required for white LED systems. The microcontrollers can implement power line communications (PLC) for street light networks that allow cities to pinpoint power outages and centrally manage and adjust lighting based on time of day, traffic, or weather conditions.
Piccolo microcontrollers enable higher operating efficiency and control for solar panels. Typical solar systems use one inverter across multiple panels, but investigations have shown that individual micro-inverters connected to each solar panel within a system can drive higher power conversation efficiencies. Micro-inverters maximize the output of each individual panel compared to system-wide inverters that maximize the average output of the panels as a complete system.
The series features a programmable, floating-point control law accelerator (CLA) designed to offload complex high-speed control algorithms from the main TMS320C28x CPU. The CLA, available starting with the F2803x Series, frees the CPU to handle I/O and feedback loop metrics, resulting in up to 5x performance increase for common closed-loop applications.
TI’s enhanced pulse-width modulators (ePWM) support the industry's highest resolution with frequency modulation down to 150 pico-seconds to enable more control over harmonics and reduce sample-to-output delay– a critical factor to avoid missing falling edges of signals. The company claims that at 4.6 MSPS, Piccolo devices’ on-chip, 12-bit A dc is up to four times faster than the closest competitor.
Two on-chip oscillators operate at 10 MHz each with +/- 1% accuracy, eliminating the need for external oscillators. Piccolo oscillators offer triple redundancy with on-chip self-test features to help achieve system-level safety certifications. Simple power architecture eliminates the need for external power ICs and uses a single 3.3 V supply with internal regulator down to 1.9 V while providing brown-out protection and power-on reset.
The F2802x Series will be available for sampling in December and will include 40 to 60 MHz variations, up to 128 KB Flash memory, 12-bit A dc, ePWM, and peripherals such as communications protocols, on-chip oscillators, and analog comparators. Device introductions in 2009 will offer higher performance and memory sizes the CLA and LIN and CAN communications peripherals. The microcontrollers are 100% code-compatible with earlier-generation C2000 devices.
Building on the controlCard concept of removable target boards with general and application-specific target boards, TI will introduce an F2802x/F2803x-based controlCard in December for $49, compatible with all C2000 experimenter's and application-specific developer’s kits. Each kit includes a 32 K code-limited version of TI’s Code Composer Studio IDE, Gerber, and hardware files, and free application software. Hands-on training workshops are available worldwide.
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