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MCUs cut EBOM for e-metering applications

Posted: 12 Jan 2009     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:electricity metering  microcontroller  ultra-low power  signal processor 

From Texas Instruments Inc. comes the MSP430FE42x2 microcontroller series, reducing electronic bill of materials (EBOM) to the Rs.50 ($1) range in high volumes for single-phase electricity metering applications.

MSP430FE42x2 MCUs integrate all metering functionality onto a single chip and offers ultra-low power operation so that only simple voltage regulation is required for a complete solution. FE42x2 MCUs come in a 64-pin LQFP package, offer up to 32 kB of in-system programmable flash memory and are available today.

Key features and benefits:

- Unique embedded signal processor (ESP) peripheral fully automates energy conversion by integrating two independent, high-resolution sigma-delta ADCs, programmable gain amplifiers, a temperature sensor, precision voltage reference, H/W multiplier and a dedicated fixed function MSP430 CPU.

- The ESP provides 0.1 per cent accurate energy measurement over a dynamic current range of 1000- to-1, surpassing the 1 per cent accuracy common in typical meters today.

- A second, fully-programmable on-chip MSP430 CPU is available for application processing and communication functions. An enhanced watchdog timer, brownout protection and a supply voltage supervisor increase system reliability.

- A 128 segment LCD driver, a three channel 16-bit pulse width modulation timer, serial communication port and a basic timer for a real-time clock function provide all functionality for a complete metre implementation while saving board space, reducing development time and streamlining time-to-market.

- Direct device operation from 3V supply with the CPU and ESP active at only 2.5mA. During a power outage, the device can operate in standby mode at 1.1 uA with real-time clock function active. Ultra-low power can enable 10 and 20-year battery life in metering applications.

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