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MPU boasts 1GHz processing speed

Posted: 19 Sep 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:industrial automation? digital media processor? MPU?

Texas Instruments Inc. (TI) has rolled out the ARM Cortex-A8 MPU that touts up to 1GHz processing speed and less than 2W power dissipation. The AM387x ARM Cortex-A8 MPUs are designed for fanless industrial automation, and networking and communications applications.

The MPUs offer integration of the ARM Cortex-A8 core, peripherals for high-bandwidth connectivity (SATA, D-CAN, PCIe and Gigabit Ethernet switch), 3D graphics for enhanced GUIs and display subsystems for camera connectivity and viewing. In industrial automation applications, the AM387x ARM Cortex-A8 MPU can connect to and control IP and CAN networks, HD displays, keyboard, mouse, PC, SD card and various general purpose peripherals, all via one highly integrated processor. A high-speed, shared data bus allows for reduced communication overhead and quick access to shared data. The result is reduced chip count, discrete memory costs and PCB space compared to separate solutions.

TI said its free EZ Software Development Kit (EZ SDK) allows customers to evaluate the MPUs in minutes and begin development in less than an hour. To differentiate products quickly and protect hardware and software investments, developers can use the EZ SDK as well as a single evaluation module (EVM) to ease migration between the pin-for-pin and software compatible DM814x DaVinci digital media processors. Migrating from the AM387x ARM Cortex-A8 MPU to the DM814x digital media processors allows developers to add HD video to a variety of industrial applications. In an industrial automation application, developers can add video compression for storage, enabling data collection and analysis from this stored footage later, in addition to the advanced system control, networking and display capabilities provided by the ARM. The MPUs will find its application in industrial human machine interface systems, multiprotocol industrial control, wireless access points and network attached storage.

Developers can begin evaluation of the AM387x ARM MPUs and DM814x DaVinci digital media processors with TI's EVM for $2,249. TI's EZ SDK is available for free download. Linux support is currently available, while the Android and Windows Embedded CE 7 from TI, QNX and VxWorks third-party real-time OS will be out in the market by 4Q2011. Samples in 1,000 unit quantities are priced at $23.85 for the AM387x ARM MPU, and $38.43 for the DM814x DaVinci.

TI's ARM MPU data

AM387x ARM Cortex-A8 MPUs' features

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