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New Microchip PIC18 48MHz Microcontrollers with USB

By Eric Lawson
Nov 8, 2004 - 2:56:00 PM

Microchip has introduced a family of 48MHz PIC18 microcontrollers with USB connectivity.
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CHANDLER, Ariz., Nov. 8, 2004 [NASDAQ:  MCHP] — Microchip Technology Inc., a leading provider of microcontroller and analog semiconductors, today announced the first Flash PIC® PIC18 microcontrollers with Full-Speed USB 2.0 connectivity and 48 megahertz (MHz) operation, for 12 megabits-per-second (Mbps) data-transfer rates. 

In combination with a wide variety of on-chip peripherals and nanoWatt Technology power management, these features provide a complete embedded-control solution for designers working with USB in industrial, medical and many other embedded applications.

Most USB-capable microcontrollers are optimized exclusively for the personal computing (PC) peripherals and consumer markets, leaving a real void for embedded engineers.  Microchip’s new USB PIC microcontroller family targets embedded applications that operate in harsh environments and occasionally connect to personal computers.  The four new Full-Speed USB PIC microcontrollers address these needs by integrating USB as one of the primary serial interfaces, as opposed to the prevalent approach that adds a serial-to-USB patch on top of a legacy design.

“Most USB microcontrollers focus on the PC peripherals market – neglecting the unique requirements of many embedded designers working on stand-alone embedded applications,” said Ganesh Moorthy, vice president of Microchip’s Advanced Microcontroller and Memory Division.  “This new Full-Speed USB PIC microcontroller family can perform as the sole controller in embedded applications thanks to the performance of its powerful 12 MIPS RISC core, self-programmable Flash memory and the power-saving features of our nanoWatt Technology.”

Microchip 48MHz PIC18F with USB Block Diagram
Microchip 48MHz PIC18F with USB Block Diagram

Examples of embedded networking applications that benefit from these Full-Speed USB PIC microcontrollers include:  industrial (manufacturing tools, data loggers, scanners, smart displays, micro fuel cells, gambling-machine peripherals, RFID readers, robot-controller interfaces, industrial timers, gas-flow analyzers, cable-test fixtures); medical (voice-activated applications, advanced wheel chairs, research equipment automation); automotive (vehicle-network bus diagnostic tools, vehicle trace recorders [black boxes], ultrasonic sensors); battery-powered (handheld tools, sensors, security applications, remote controls, home automation); consumer (business-card scanners, white-board digitizers, voice recorders, uninterruptable power-supply systems, MP3 players,  fire alarms, security-system programmers).

One of the USB Microchip PIC microcontroller family’s key features is its 24 or 32 Kbytes of self-programmable Enhanced Flash memory, which allows field upgrades for end applications via the USB port.  Microchip’s advanced PMOS Electrically Erasable Cell (PEEC) Flash technology provides high endurance of up to 100,000 erase/write cycles and long data retention of more than 40 years.  In addition, its Full-Speed USB 2.0 interface includes an onboard transceiver and a Parallel Streaming Port for direct data transfers to external peripherals with minimum CPU overhead.

Microchip PIC18 with USB key features include:

  • 2 Kbytes of RAM, 1 Kbyte of which can be a dedicated USB buffer
  • 256 bytes of EEPROM data memory
  • EUSART for RS232, RS485 and LIN serial interfaces
  • Master Synchronous Serial Port for I2C™ and SPI™ communication
  • 10-bit Analog-to-Digital Converter with high accuracy (+/- 1 LSB) and up to 12 input channels
  • Two Analog Comparators
  • Capture/Compare/PWM module with16-bit capture and resolution
  • Enhanced Capture/Compare/PWM module with dead-time control and fault-protection inputs
  • Four Timers (3 x 16-bit, 1 x 8-bit)
  • Programmable Brownout Reset and Low Voltage Detect circuits
  • Enhanced In-Circuit Debugging capabilities with up to three hardware breakpoints

Microchip PIC Programmer Development Support
An area of major concern for most new USB-application designers is the quantity and quality of available firmware support.  Microchip is introducing an extensive set of libraries for the most common application classes, including the Human Interface Device (HID), Communication Device Class (CDC) and custom drivers.  Recognizing the need for migration from legacy applications, Microchip is publishing specific application notes illustrating how to replace a serial port with a Full-Speed USB link in a few easy steps (without the need to become a USB expert).

The MP-USB Wizard 2.0, a GUI-based Windows® application that guides the designer through the creation of the descriptor tables, is expected to be available for free via download from Microchip’s Web site in December.  The new USB PIC microcontrollers are also supported by Microchip’s world-class development systems, including:  MPLAB® Integrated Development Environment (IDE), MPLAB C18 C Compiler, MPLAB ICD 2 In-Circuit Debugger and MPLAB PM3 Universal Device Programmer.  In addition, the PICDEM™ Full-Speed USB Demo Board (part # DM163025), and MPLAB ICE 2000 and MPLAB ICE 4000 In-Circuit Emulator processor modules (part # PCM18XR0), which ease development with this family’s advanced USB features, are expected to be available in December.

In the package options listed below, the four new USB PIC microcontrollers are planned for general sampling and volume production in December.  For pricing or additional information, contact any Microchip sales representative or authorized worldwide distributor.
PIC18F2550 and PIC18F2455:  28-pin SOIC, SDIP
PIC18F4550 and PIC18F4455:  40-pin DIP; 44-pin TQFP, QFN

About Microchip Technology
Microchip Technology Inc. (NASDAQ:  MCHP) is a leading provider of microcontroller and analog semiconductors, providing low-risk product development, lower total system cost and faster time to market for thousands of diverse customer applications worldwide.  Headquartered in Chandler, Arizona, Microchip offers outstanding technical support along with dependable delivery and quality.

Note:  The Microchip name and logo, PIC and MPLAB are registered trademarks of Microchip Technology Inc. in the USA and other countries.  PICDEM is a registered trademark of Microchip Technology Inc. in the USA and other countries.  I2C is a trademark of Philips Corporation.  SPI is a trademark of Motorola.  Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft.  All other trademarks mentioned herein are the property of their respective companies.


New Microchip PIC18 48MHz Microcontrollers with USB

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