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Industrial MCUs tout smart analogue for accurate measurements

Posted: 11 Nov 2014     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Texas Instruments  MCU  smart grid  smart analogue 

Texas Instruments (TI) has released a line-up of industrial microcontrollers (MCUs) that features smart analogue for high accuracy, precision and cost savings.

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The MSP430i204x MCUs operate from -40°C to 105°C to handle industrial and smart grid applications, and are geared for various cost-sensitive industrial segments such as occupancy sensors, remote temperature and pressure transmitters and power monitoring.

The industrial MCUs contain integrated smart analogue, including up to four integrated sigma delta analogue-to-digital converters (ADCs) that provide industry-leading accuracy and precision down to one per cent in smart metering products across a 2000:1 dynamic range, noted TI. The MSP430i204x MCUs also include an internal digitally controlled oscillator (DCO) that cuts the need for an external crystal. Small package sizes enable designers to reduce board space and lower system costs, while increasing accuracy.

Developers porting to the MSP430i204x industrial MCUs can scale their designs to include 16KB or 32KB flash memory and integrated analogue such as sigma-delta analogue front ends (AFEs). TI also offers three comprehensive TI Designs with schematics, block diagrams, BOM, design files and test reports to help developers start their single-phase smart metre, sub-metering and smart plug designs. These complete industrial reference designs incorporate TI's complementary TPS54060 step-down (buck) converter and the SimpleLink WiFi CC3200 wireless MCU to enable industrial designs to communicate with other connected devices. In addition, developers can leverage TI's DAC8760 family of digital-to-analogue converters (DACs) for 4-20mA current loop industrial sensor applications to further reduce board space and lower system costs, while maintaining high accuracy in their designs.

Available in small package sizes, 28-pin TSSOP and 32-pin QFP, the MCUs enable developers to reduce design cost and create smaller products for industrial applications. In addition, the portfolio allows simultaneous sampling of the on-chip 24bit sigma delta ADCs that eliminates software compensation for sequential sampling, which helps developers reduce the size of software code. Also, additional analogue provides tamper detection for metering, which allows developers to design smart energy meters that can detect unauthorised access. Likewise, a free Energy Library code performs all of the energy and power calculations required for ANSI/IEC qualified meters and provides an easy starting point for customers developing utility meter products.

MSP430i2040 MCUs with 16 KB flash are available in production quantities for $1.68 in 1K units. MSP430i2041 MCUs with 32KB flash are available for $1.75 in 1K units. Developers can start their industrial designs with the sub-metering EVM MSP430-i2040SUBMTR or the MSP-TS430RHB32A target board for $115.

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