The MSP430 MCU just gained an ARM-based cousin, the M4-based MSP432

April 7, 2015 OpenSystems Media

I’ve always been a fan of TI’s MSP430 MCU. If an architecture could be labeled a “pioneer” in the low-power MCU space, that’s where I’d put the MSP430. It always seemed to be the one that other low-power competitors compared themselves to.

TI has taken that architecture to a new level by introducing a new member with a new core – an ARM Cortex M4. The 32-bit MSP432 MCU runs at 48 MHz and consumes 95 µA/MHz in active mode and 850 nA in standby mode. They’re also built with TI’s integrated analog peripherals, such as a high-speed 14-bit 1 MSps analog-to-digital converter (ADC), which further optimizes power efficiency and performance. The integrated DC/DC optimizes power efficiency at high-speed operation, while an integrated LDO reduces overall system cost and design complexity.

The MCUs can operate from a voltage ranging from 1.62 V to 3.7 V. The MCU includes a selectable RAM retention feature that provides dedicated power to each of the eight RAM banks. Hence, overall system power can be reduced by 30 nA per bank.

Embedded applications that are suited for the new family include industrial and building automation, industrial sensing, industrial security panels, asset tracking, and consumer electronics. Developers can get started quickly, thanks to a target board or a low-cost LaunchPad rapid prototyping kit with on-board emulation. Multiple operating systems are supported, including TI-RTOS, FreeRTOS, and Micrium µC/OS.

Rich Nass, Embedded Computing Brand Director
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