Electronic Design

Compact 8-Bit Module Targets Internet Appliances

Inexpensive Ethernet-based mi-croprocessor core modules keep the price of networked devices down while simplifying development. The RCM2100 series of Ethernet microprocessor cores from Rabbit Semiconductor packs an 8-bit, 22.1-MHz Rabbit 2000 microprocessor with a 10Base-T Ethernet adapter on a 51- by 89-mm board.

Many Internet appliances do not require the power or sophistication of a 16- or 32-bit processor. An integrated solution like the RCM2100 makes sense for process control, system monitoring, compact Web servers, and similar applications.

With the core's slave interface, a master Rabbit module can control multiple Rabbit-based modules. The slave interface can act as a master or slave. An RCM2100 configured as a master can act as a Web front end for an array of Rabbit modules.

The RCM2100 incorporates 512 kbytes of static RAM and 512 kbytes of flash memory. The RCM2110 cuts both back to 128 kbytes. Both models have 34 parallel I/O lines grouped as five 8-bit ports and four high-speed serial ports.

A development kit includes the RCM2100 RabbitCore module with an Ethernet connection, the Dynamic C SE software development system, a prototyping board, a power supply, and documentation. The module plugs into the prototyping board. Also, the development system has no run-time royalties. It includes a TCP/IP stack and a Web server.

The RCM2100 costs $89, and the RCM2110 is $59. Non-Ethernet versions are $69 and $49, respectively. The development kit is $279.

Rabbit Semiconductor, 2932 Spafford St., Davis, CA 95616; (530) 757-8400; www.rabbitsemiconductor.com.

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