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Using nvSRAM in single board computer (SBC) applications

Posted: 26 May 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:nvSRAM application note? SBC applications? single board computers?

The first single board computer (SBC) was the MYCRO-1 built around an Intel 8080 CPU. SBCs have featured in the history of home computers (for example, in the Acorn Electron and the BBC Micro). Initially, manufacturers designed and built their own CPU computer boards. When a product used a proprietary OS, its unique IO or performance requirements made it expensive. Now, industrial and commercial OS are used and this allows smaller manufacturers and developers to produce competitive products in less time. This convergence has made it possible for manufacturers to produce cost effective and successful SBC designs. SBC designs were initially chosen by smaller companies that lacked in-house design capability. Now, SBC designs are preferred by large manufacturers with production runs greater than 5,000 units. SBC designs are more convenient than proprietary boards because they are qualified for a range of operating systems that expand the methods they are used in.

SBCs are commonly used in industrial situations. They are used in rack mount format for process control or embedded within other devices to provide control and interfacing. This creates very high levels of integration, reduced component counts, and reduced connector counts. SBCs are smaller, lighter, more power efficient, and are more reliable than comparable multiboard computers.

The flexibility of fast non-volatile memory for the storage of user- or application-specific parameters is apparent with each new system generation. The Cypress family of fast nvSRAMs are ideally suited for this type of application. They reliably store data in a non-volatile semiconductor memory without batteries, and yet look like a standard SRAM to the processor. Ease of implementation, ability to rapidly change data and the ability to use modern manufacturing techniques helps to reduce costs and improves the speed of getting the product to the market.

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