Auto Electronics

Renesas broadens 16-bit R8C/Tiny MCU series

Renesas Technology America Inc. has expanded its R8C/Tiny series of 16-bit flash microcontrollers (MCUs) by adding 36 new models; some offering low-voltage (2.2 V to 5.5 V) and a wide-temperature-range (-40 °C to +125 °C) operation.

Paul Kanan, Renesas marketing manager for body control applications, said the new devices offer a 16-bit CPU and eight-bit peripherals at a price relatively close to that for an eight-bit CPU. The new devices are available in smaller (20-pin and 32-pin) packages and have reduced memory configurations (up to 32 k of flash memory).

They target applications such as sunroof, headlamp and mirror controllers that are currently served by MCUs with an eight-bit core. “These are applications able to benefit from a more capable core due to increased memory or I/O requirements, because the applications have become more complex,” Kanan said.

“The market for eight-bit devices remains strong, but these devices provide upward mobility. We are sizing our ROM and flash for the eight-bit scalability segment, offering the performance enhancement of a 16-bit core.”

Devices in the R8C/26 and R8C/27 groups come in 32-pin, (7 mm x 7 mm) LQFP packages and can include 8, 16, 24 or 32 Kbytes of on-chip flash memory. Devices in the R8C/28 and R8C/29 groups are available in 20-pin (6.5 mm x 4.4 mm) LSSOP packages with eight or 16 Kbytes of on-chip flash. MCUs in the R8C/27 and R8C/29 groups include an extra 2 Kbytes of data flash memory with higher endurance, organized as two 1 Kbyte blocks, that can be used for both program and data storage. On-chip peripherals include a precision clock oscillator and a low-voltage detection circuit. A high-resolution 16-bit timer can be clocked at speeds up to 40 MHz by a separate on-chip oscillator. A LIN interface is available for automotive applications. Kanan said that to simplify the development of LIN-compatible products and reduce the CPU's software processing load, most protocol processing is performed by hardware using an eight-bit timer channel and a synchronous/UART serial interface channel.

Development tools for the new devices include the E8 emulator/on-chip debugger with single-pin connection capability, which allows all I/O pins to be used during debugging, for more efficient program development. The E8 can also be used as a flash memory writer. An integrated development environment, the high-performance embedded workshop (HEW), is also available, as are third-party tools and services.

Renesas is now offering a factory flash programming service for a $1,000 non-recurring engineering (NRE) fee, with no additional per-device fees. The minimum order quantity for the free factory programming service is 50,000 pieces per-year and the minimum lot for each order is 2,000 pieces.

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