32-bit MCUs combine high performance with DSP & FPU

25th January 2016
Nat Bowers

The RX230 Group of 32-bit MCUs have been introduced by Renesas Electronics Europe. The MCUs achieve top-class power performances in standby at only 0.8μA and operate from a 1.8-5.5V supply, making them suitable for applications requiring high processing performance in environments with low current supply capacity, as well as the robustness needed in home appliance applications.

Compared to the existing RX231 Group, the RX230 is optimised with regard to embedded flash size and feature. This covers the requirements of cost-sensitive industrial and consumer applications who not require USB nor CAN interfaces in their application design and require 256kB Flash or less for their code, at a maximum of large 32kB embedded RAM.

The RX230 Group can handle high processing loads, such as eliminating noise from digital signals and performing floating-point calculations, by using Renesas’ powerful 32-bit RXv2 CPU core with DSP/FPU operation capabilities. The RXv2 CPU core achieves a performance benchmark score of 4.16CoreMark/MHz, combined with the operating speeds of 54MHz, as well as an approximately fourfold increase in DSP performance and sixfold in FPU performance.

The RX230 Group can recover from standby mode in a minimum of 5µs, which makes it possible to reduce current loss during the recovery and allow the application to react quickly to external events. Applications can be executed from flash after this time and analogue functions, such as the ADC, are available for use.

The RX230 Group provides proven capacitive touch sensor capabilities equipped with Renesas’ 2nd gen capacitive touch technology. Up to 24 touch keys in a 100-pin package and down to 6 touch keys in 48-pin package are provided for a self-capacitance mode operation. Using the mutual capacitance mode, the RX230 MCUs can support up to 64 keys, and combines high sensitivity with a high level of noise tolerance. The RX230 detects touches even when the panel is wet or when the operator is wearing gloves, which creates highly flexible user interfaces in terms of usage environment and device design.

The RX230 MCUs offer extensive hardware-based safety features for UL and IEC60730, including self-diagnostic and disconnect-detection monitoring for the on-chip ADC, a clock frequency accuracy measurement circuit, an independent watchdog timer and a built-in hardware memory test to spot anomalies in the internal RAM.

The RX230 Group enables operation from a single 1.8 to 5.5V power supply, which allows system manufacturers to design robust applications and minimises their concerns about the signal-to-noise ratio. Moreover, the RX230 offers not only operation, but also reprogramming and erasing of the flash memory over the whole supply voltage range, which ensures an easy and cost optimised application design. The broadly scalable power supply concept therefore ensures that the RX230 is suited for home appliance and industrial application requirements.

Mass production of the RX230 Group has already started.

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