CHANDLER, Ariz. ‚â€” Microchip Technology Inc. [NASDAQ: MCHP] announced an enhancement to the microcontroller (MCU) architecture supporting Mid-range 8-bit PIC12 and PIC16 MCUs. Building upon the success of Microchip‚â€™s popular Mid-range core, the enhanced core provides numerous technical improvements, including more program and data memory; a deeper/enhanced hardware stack; additional reset methods; 14 additional programming instructions, including ‚â€œC‚â€ efficiency optimizations resulting in code size reductions; increased peripheral support; reduced interrupt latency, and other enhancements.
Recognizing the demand for increased performance and peripherals within the 8-bit MCU market, Microchip continues to invest in its 8-bit PIC‚Â® MCU line to provide a broad product portfolio that meets the needs of its existing and future customers. The enhanced core builds upon the best elements of the existing Mid-range core and provides additional performance, while maintaining compatibility with existing Mid-range products for true product migration. The enhancements provide users with a boost of performance of up to 50% and code-size reductions of up to 40% for various algorithms and functions. Microchip‚â€™s Mid-range 8-bit PIC MCUs continue their wide market acceptance and gain further momentum into applications where MCUs have been historically void, thereby enabling designers to differentiate their products in the marketplace.
The enhanced core enables increased levels of integration and the use of multiple peripherals without sacrificing performance. It also provides a long-term expansion path for new peripheral support. These features result in application longevity, scalability, ease of design and overall versatility. Example peripheral support onboard the enhanced Mid-range core includes Microchip‚â€™s mTouch‚â„¢ Sensing Solution module for touch-sensing user interfaces; LCD displays; multiple Analog-to-Digital Converters (ADCs) and Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) modules; additional timers and analog comparators, among other peripherals.
Additional feature enhancements include increased memory support with program Flash addressability up to 56 KB and Data RAM up to 4 KB. This enables the creation of more versatile code with increased functionality, for more complex applications‚â€”especially useful when developing code in the C programming language. With 14 additional instructions‚â€”for a total of 49‚â€”the enhanced core optimizes program code and data handling, which reduces code space and increases efficiency with fewer clock cycles. It also provides the ability to migrate with minimal effort among existing Mid-range PIC MCUs; as well as up or down with PIC12, PIC16 and PIC18 MCUs.
Mid-range PIC MCUs employing the enhanced core can target a wide variety of general-purpose applications. Examples include those in the appliance (blenders, refrigerators, dishwashers); consumer/home electronic (athletic attire, cell phones, phone chargers, electric shavers, vacuum cleaners); industrial (digital water heaters, security systems, HVAC control); automotive (car audio, remote controls, power seats, lighting control) and medical markets (intelligent medical bandages, pregnancy testers, glucose meters, patient-monitoring equipment).
Filed Under: Semiconductor, Electronics • electrical