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Devices retain logic states even without power

Posted: 01 Jun 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:non-volatile state saver? FRAM? non-volatile storage?

FM1105 and FM1106 non-volatile state saver from Ramtron

Ramtron International Corp. launches the industry's first non-volatile state saver that retains the state of signals on demand and restores them to the correct state automatically upon power up. The new family of low-power, non-volatile state savers currently include FM1105, which operates at 5V and FM1106, which operates at 3V.

The state saver is simple to use like a D-type flip-flop. It operates like conventional logic, but stores and retains the logic state in the absence of power, simplifying the design of system control functions. The non-volatile state saver is ideal for diverse applications such as switch interfaces, relay drivers, LED drivers, recording error flags, power down state detection, non-volatile counters, tamper indicators, door open indicators, motor on/off control, DIP switch replacement, and jumper replacement, among others.

"The FM1105 and FM1106 are the first in a new line of novel products that use FRAM technology," says Mike Alwais, Ramtron vice president. "Non-volatile storage applied to logic is a revolutionary concept, which has yielded a unique product that can remember stored output values without a battery. Any change in state is automatically recorded in a non-volatile ferroelectric latch. This function is possible due to the fast writes and extremely high endurance of the underlying ferroelectric memory technology."

Continuous access
The low-power non-volatile state saver provides continuous access to non-volatile system settings without reading a memory or consuming dedicated processor I/O pins, said Ramtron. It enables storage of signals that may change frequently and without notice, and it allows the non-volatile storage of system settings without the system overhead and extra pins of a serial memory.

FM1105 operates from 4.5V to 5.5V at a low operating current of less than 15?A, while changing state continuously at 1KHz. FM1106 operates from 2.7-3.6V and boasts a low operating current of less than 5?A, while changing state continuously at 1KHz. Both devices offer an unlimited number of state changes, can run up to 1MHz and operate over the industrial temperature range of -40C to 85C.

The nonvolatile state saver is suitable for setting the correct state of a relay or switch. During normal operation, the system sets the state saver to control the relay. When power fails, the state saver remembers the last state and restores it automatically and immediately on power up. This allows the relay to power up in the correct stateon or off as the application requires. As a switch replacement, for example DIP switches or jumpers, the nonvolatile state saver allows software to alter switch settings and still have continuous access to the signals even on power up.

Engineering samples of both FM1105 and FM1106 parts are available now. The device is packaged in an 8-pin SOT23 that is RoHS-compliant. Unit pricing starts at 36 cents for quantities of 10,000 units.

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