DSP, Micros & Memory


MCUs for real-time control, analytics and networking

28 July 2021 DSP, Micros & Memory

Brand new from Texas Instruments (TI) comes a high-performance microcontroller (MCU) portfolio that advances real-time control, networking and analytics applications at the edge. With new Sitara AM2x MCUs, TI says engineers can achieve 10 times the computing capability of traditional, Flash-based MCUs.

This high-performance portfolio closes the growing gap between today’s MCUs and processors, enabling designers to push the limits in applications such as factory automation, robotics, automotive systems and sustainable energy management.

Built around high-performance Arm MCU cores, the Sitara AM2x portfolio includes single- and multi-core devices running at speeds up to 1 GHz and integrates specialised peripherals and accelerators. Implementing high-performance processing capabilities is made easier by accessible tools and easy-to-use software that simplify evaluation and reduce overall design complexity and cost.

Processor-level performance

The AM243x MCUs, the first family of devices available in the AM2x portfolio, feature up to four Arm Cortex-R5F cores, each running at up to 800 MHz. This high processing speed is critical in factory equipment such as robotics, where fast computations, coupled with the MCU’s internal memory, enhance a robot’s precision of motion and speed of movement, translating to higher productivity.

The additional processing capability enables designers to add analytics for functions such as predictive maintenance, reducing downtime on factory floors. In typical applications, AM243x devices can achieve this level of performance while consuming less than 1 W of active power, enabling factory operators to extend their power resources, lowering both their operating costs and energy footprint.

Real-time control and networking at the edge

Sitara AM243x MCUs integrate sensing and actuation peripherals to enable low-latency, real-time processing and control for factory automation, as well as communications accelerators to simplify industrial networking. AM243x devices expand upon TI’s support of multiple gigabit industrial Ethernet protocols and time-sensitive networking (TSN), enabling next-generation factory networks.

With the AM243x range, engineers can leverage certified protocol stacks available directly from TI to support EtherNet/IP, EtherCAT, Profinet, IO-Link Master and more to meet evolving industrial communication standards. On-chip security features on these MCUs support the latest encryption requirements and integrated functional safety mechanisms, diagnostics and collateral help enable system integrators to target up to Safety Integrity Level (SIL) 3 of the IEC 61508 standard with their industrial designs.

Design tools and software

To reduce the complexity of design and development, TI created the Sitara AM243x LaunchPad Development Kit, enabling the quick evaluation of these high-performance MCUs. With this evaluation tool and the Sitara MCU+ software framework, developers can immediately start using the precision real-time control and out-of-the-box networking capabilities integrated into the AM243x MCU. Developers also have access to application-specific reference examples, a strong ecosystem of tools and software and the MCU+ Academy training portal to help them streamline designs and accelerate time to market.

For more information visit www.ti.com




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