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ARM9 MCU supports migration from ARM7

Posted: 07 Jun 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Atmel? ARM9? AT91SAM9260? AT91SAM? MCU?

Atmel Corp. has announced the AT91SAM9260, the first member of a pin-compatible ARM9-based MCU family that shares the same programming model as ARM7-based controllers, allowing direct migration between controllers based on different ARM cores. This new MCU supports deterministic, realtime operation, offers supervisory functions, and has third-party RTOS support comparable to those of 8bit controllers.

Designed for highly-connected image processing applications such as point-of-sale terminals, Ethernet-based IP cameras and bar code readers, the new device integrates a 200MIPS ARM926EJ-S core with a camera interface, seven USARTs, 10/100 Ethernet MAC, 12Mbps USB device and host controller with on-chip transceivers, external bus interface supporting SDRAM, Flash, NAND Flash with built-in ECC, SD, SDIO, and MMC interface, three SSCs, two master/slave SPIs, a three-channel 16bit timer/counter, TWI and IEEE 1149.1 JTAG Boundary Scan on all digital pins.

The internal bus bandwidth of the new device is maximized by 24 DMA channels and a five-layer high-speed bus matrix, Atmel said. It connects all masters and slaves in the system in a parallel fashion and enables data transfers between peripherals and on- and off-chip memories without any CPU intervention. A programmable arbiter manages the priorities between the bus masters. Highly critical interrupt routines can be locked in the 16Kbyte instruction cache, guaranteeing a deterministic response time to interrupts, the company added.

A system controller promises a full complement of supervisory functions that includes an 8-level priority interrupt controller, RC-oscillator, PLLs, realtime periodic interval and watchdog timers, reset and shutdown controllers, and backup registers. The shutdown controller puts the processor in an ultra low power mode, typically less than 10A.

The new device has third-party RTOS support from Green Hills Software, Mentor Graphics and Micrium. Compiler/debuggers are available from Green Hills Software, ARM, Keil, IAR Systems and any compliant ARM926EJ-S compiler. Windows CE and Linux operating system support is also provided.

The AT91SAM9260 is available now in a 217-ball LFBGA RoHS-compliant package and in a 208-pin Green QFP package and is priced at or near $6 in quantities of 100,000. Additional members of the SAM9 family will be available in late 2006 and 2007.

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