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MCU delivers 500nA standby mode

Posted: 24 Oct 2005     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:texas instruments  ti  msp430f20xx  mcu  very low-power oscillator technology 

Texas Instruments Inc. (TI) recently disclosed that its newest MSP430F20xx low pin-count, ultra-low power MCU series will deliver a 500nA standby mode utilizing very low-power oscillator (VLO) technology. According to the press release, the VLO technology allows the MSP430F20xx MCU to be totally self-clocked in an ultra-low power standby mode with self-wakeup capability using no external components. This enables systems such as fire detectors or home thermostats to operate from the same battery for over a decade.

The 500nA standby is achieved with all device failsafe features active, including zero-power brown-out reset (BOR), allowing both ultra-low power and extremely reliable systems. Prior to VLO, said TI, designers had been forced to use external crystals or oscillator circuits to achieve ultra-low power standby. Using no external components, the VLO reduces systems component count, costs and space.

The MSP430F20xx MCUs offer a flexible clock system that allows fast operation of up to 16MIPS with no external components using a digitally controlled oscillator (DCO). The DCO is fully programmable up to 16MHz and stable over temperature and voltage with the ability to switch from standby to a fully operation in <1µs. Ultra-low power standby combined with 16MIPS in <1µs allows high-performance systems to stay in standby longer allowing applications to conserve power and use smaller, lower cost batteries. If embedded real-time clock (RTC) function is required the F20xx MCU can also use a common 32kHz crystal and achieve a standby mode of 0.7µA.

All F20xx devices operate from 1.8V to 3.6V, allowing direct battery operation, and are available in a 14-pin footprint as small as 4-by-4mm with 10 GPIO pins that include programmable pull-up/pull-down resistors. Designers can match their requirements to three pin-compatible F20xx MCU peripheral options that include an analog comparator for very cost sensitive applications, 200KSPS 10-bit analog-to-digital converter (ADC) for real-time signal processing or a 16-bit sigma-delta ADC for high-precision systems.

All devices include an enhanced watchdog timer for extreme reliability, a multi-function 16-bit timer and in-system programmable flash that provide greater design flexibility, and field upgrade capability. With 128B of RAM and a full featured 16-bit RISC CPU, complete development in C and reuse of existing MSP430 instruction set architecture (ISA) libraries is supported to reduce time-to-market.

The MSP430F20x3 and MSP430F20x1 MCUs are already sampling with full production scheduled Q4 2005. The MSP430F20x2 MCUs will sample Q4 2005 with production early Q1 2006.

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