Renesas Electronics Corporation today unveiled the RX64M Group of microcontrollers (MCUs), its first product in the flagship RX Family of 32-bit MCUs to be fabricated in a 40nm process. Based on the new RXv2 CPU core, which was announced in November 2013, the new MCU Group consists of 112 products running up to 120 megahertz (MHz) with zero wait state from the high-speed embedded flash memory and feature both the high-speed real-time performance as well as large memory capacities required by industrial applications and network equipment. The new MCUs offer system designers a path to quickly and efficiently develop high-performance, low-power industrial equipment that supports a wide range of communication functions.
“As more and increasingly diverse Internet of Things applications emerge, designers are looking at smarter embedded design to achieve the desired energy efficiencies and performance,” said Semir Haddad, Director of Product Marketing, Renesas Electronics America. “Leveraging the RXv2 CPU core, the new RX64M MCUs offer system designers working with Smart Factory and Smart Building applications a high-end MCU solution to address evolving power, performance and memory demands for their markets.”
With the expansion of the connected society and Internet of Things (IoT) markets, there has been rapid growth in diverse IoT-related products such as connected network and industrial equipment used in factory automation and building automation, driving the need for greater CPU computing performance, improved real-time response, and ever lower power.
Smart Factory and Smart Building applications are also driving the demand for increased memory capacities, as the deployment of Ethernet, USB, and a wide range of other communications functions becomes more prevalent in these environments, to support all levels of factory communication from the plant level to the device level. Increased memory capacity will also play a key role in supporting further miniaturization of application equipment, and to secure software from unauthorized parties.
Improved development efficiency has also become a critical issue to support the move toward reduced development periods even as the number of process steps and costs from development through testing for software and hardware with expanding capacities and scales increases. Renesas designed the new RX64M Group of MCUs products to address these issues.
Part of the RX Family, which covers a wide range of applications, from mid-range to high-end products, the RX64M MCUs provide a high-end MCU solution for applications that require the higher performance, on-chip memory and lower power. Since the new MCUs maintain compatibility with the existing product line, system designers working with current RX products can migrate easily to these new MCUs. Also, system designers who adopt the RX64M MCUs or other members of the RX family can take advantage of a powerful set of tools that support both software and hardware development, and these tools can contribute to reducing the number of steps in the development and testing process and to reducing total costs.
The adoption of a leading-edge 40nm process provides not only increased on-chip memory capacities, but also lower power consumption and higher CPU performance.
The RX64M Group of MCUs are fabricated in a leading-edge 40nm process. Not only these MCU embedded up to 4 MB of the industry’s fastest flash memory (120 MHz operation with no wait states) and up to 512 KB of SRAM, but at the same time they also reduce operating power consumption by 40 percent compared to the earlier Renesas RX MCUs. Furthermore, by adopting the new-architecture RXv2 core, these devices will achieve CPU performance of a total of 504 Coremark, which is 1.6 times that of the previous generation devices and defines a new threshold for embedded MCU systems in overall. Thus the RX64M devices improve both real-time performance and low-power performance, and can contribute to cost reductions by reducing the need for external memory.
Renesas intends to continue development of high-functionality and high-performance MCUs for the industrial equipment and network equipment markets, which are expected to grow rapidly along with the progress in the IoT field.