Today, it seems that almost everything is controlled remotely. Gone are the days when it was mandatory to get up to change the television channel. This remote revolution hasn't overlooked automobiles. Aside from opening a car's locks, today's devices can start the ignition, activate the heater on chilly winter days, and more.
The San Jose, California-based Atmel Corp. is contributing two RF data-control transceivers to this revolution. While retaining a small size, the ATA5811 and ATA5812 offer extremely low current consumption. Both of these characteristics are vital for small, battery-driven products.
The ATA5811 is designed for operation in the 433-to-435-MHz and 868-to-870-MHz bands. The ATA5812 operates in the 314-to-316-MHz band. In both receive and transmit mode, the transceivers' current consumption is as low as 10.5 mA (3 V/Tx with 5 dBm). Thanks to this low consumption, portable applications can be powered by a single Li-cell. The result is a smaller design with an extended lifetime.
The transceivers also stand out for their high sensitivity in ASK mode (i.e., 116.5 dBm at 2.4 kBaud). They boast high sensitivity in FSK mode (i.e., −109.5 dBm at 2.4 kBaud). For long-distance operation, the ATA5811 and ATA5812 feature adjustable output power of up to +10 dBm.
According to Torsten Mann, Atmel's Marketing Director for Automotive and Control Products, this technology offers consumers a new level of security and convenience. Instead of fumbling with keys, users will be able to unlock their doors and start the engine with a single touch to the car's door. The technology is based on interlocked hopping codes and encrypted protocols. The result is an extremely secure level of communication between the car and the transceiver.
The ATA5811 and ATA5812 also can be used for many other applications that require low power consumption and an effective system solution. Examples include energy metering, home automation, and alarm systems. Samples of the transceivers in QFN48 (7-×-7-mm) packages are now available. Pricing starts at $3.90 per 10,000 units. For more information, visit www.atmel.com.