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SBC complies with LIN2.0 standard

Posted: 26 Jan 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Atmel? ATA6621? LIN? system basis chip? SBC?

Atmel Corp. announced the availability of its ATA6621 LIN system basis chip (SBC) which complies with the new LIN2.0 standard. Compared to stand-alone LIN transceivers, system basis chips such as the ATA6621 are highly integrated and include a voltage regulator plus a watchdog, said the company.

The new SBC device is designed with Atmel's high-voltage BCDMOS process and is optimized for operation up to 40V for applications in harsh environments. This includes high-volume automotive comfort applications such as door modules, seat control or intelligent sensors, and also powertrain applications such as engine control systems.

Due to the monolithic integration of the 5V voltage regulator and the watchdog, system costs can be reduced by approximately 25 percent since the discrete components required by other solutions, not using SBC chips, are not needed. As a result, the ATA6621 also needs less board space, which makes it ideally suited for applications requiring very small footprints. Another outstanding feature of the new LIN SBC, said Atmel, is its extremely low quiescent current consumption of typically 10?A in standby mode. If the microcontroller is in sleep mode, a reduced voltage regulator accuracy is sufficient to scan switches or supply flashing LEDs. The additional silent mode has been implemented to achieve quiescent currents as low as 40?A, whereas normal mode would require 50mA.

"Today's applications are getting smaller and smaller. Sensor LIN slave nodes, for example, provide ever-decreasing PCB area. Such applications will benefit from the high integration of this new LIN system basis chip," said Torsten Mann, Atmel's marketing director for automotive and control products. An important feature is the silent mode that our SBC chip provides. Due to the increasing number of ECUs in a vehicle and the communication via the bus systems, the overall current consumption of the ECUs needs to be kept as low as possible due to the permanent power requirements placed on the vehicle's battery."

To minimize EMC problems, the ATA6621 incorporates a controlled slew rate complying with the LIN 2.0 specification. The receiver's input filter also helps to minimize RF interference caused by signals on the bus line. To meet the 42V power net requirements, the bus output can tolerate short circuits of up to 60V. Furthermore, the ATA6621 LIN IC provides several protective features such as over-temperature shut down and full protection against short circuits.

Samples of the ATA6621 LIN SBC IC are available in Pb-free QFN20 packages, with pricing starting at 83 cents for 10,000-piece quantities.

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