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32bit digital signal controllers tout energy efficiency

Posted: 01 Jul 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:digital signal? controller? analog?

Freescale Semiconductor Inc. has expanded its line of digital signal controllers (DSCs) by introducing the MC56F84xx, a family of high-speed analog DSCs. The DSCs offer accuracy, performance, precision and digital control features that Freescale said help increase system stability for power supplies (digital power conversion) and motors.

The 100MHz/100MIPS 32bit MC56F84xx DSCs increase the execution of the control loops driven via single-cycle math computation, fractional arithmetic support and parallel moves that are supported by the Harvard-style architecture. It has a 321picosecond high-res pulse-width modulation (PWM) that provides precise and stable control across extended temperatures. The DSCs also have dual 12bit ADC with built-in PGA sampling up to 3.3 mega samples per second that improves real-time control for a more efficient design, Freescale said.

The DSCs also feature memory protection that restricts access to key modules and helps ensure reliable solutions. Its on-chip comparators reduce system component cost and ease of design. The MC56F84xx line, designed with programmable flash memory scaled from 64KB to 256KB, has a FlexMemory EEPROM capability that supports frequent event captures. The direct memory access (DMA) also helps ensure fast data transfers without core interruption and a 5V tolerant I/O offers flexibility, the company added.

The increased system stability for motor control applications allows motors to run efficiently and quietlydishwashers for example. This results in reduced energy waste and heat, thus leading to reduced costs and system size. For instance, a server room with power supplies that generate less heat requires less energy for cooling. Circuit board designs that have less heat to dissipate can be smaller (improved power density), reducing system size and cost and allowing "miniaturization" of the application.

The MC56F84xx family is targeted at high-end digital power supplies, such as those used for servers in data centers. Improving the energy efficiency of data centers will become increasingly critical as businesses and consumers continue the migration to cloud computing. As cloud use increases during the next few years, the average size of the data centers that host the cloud infrastructure will also grow dramatically, increasing energy consumption. With the price of electricity increasing and the typical electricity cost for a server rack equaling nearly 20 percent of its overall cost of ownership, data center owners will continue to look for more energy-efficient solutions to help reduce their total costs.

"With increased awareness and concern about worldwide energy use, designers are seeking ways to minimize energy consumption," stated Reza Kazerounian, senior vice president and general manager of Freescale's microcontroller solutions group. "Digital signal controller technology is ideal for helping improve energy efficiency."

Sample quantities of the MC56F84xx family are expected to be available in 4Q11. Suggested price is at $2 in 10,000-piece quantities.

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