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Communications Processor Leads Integration Parade

A circuit board's worth of system interface and control functions reside on the MPC8260 PowerQUICC II communications microprocessor. Based on a 100- to 200-MHz EC603e PowerPC core, the processor is a candidate for applications in networking and communications equipment such as remote access concentrators, regional office routers, cellular infrastructure, and telecomm switching equipment.In addition to its PowerPC core, the processor also contains an independent 133- or 166-MHz microcontroller dedicated to processing communication protocols at a maximum data rate of 710 Mbps. It offers support for multiple communication protocols, including 10/100-Mbps Ethernet, 155-Mbps ATM, and 256 channels of 64-kbps HDLC. On top of that, there's a system interface unit with substantial system control and glue-logic functions, including a memory controller that handles most types of memory found in embedded systems.Available free is the PowerQUICC II Toolkit, an interactive software suite that provides reference schematics, initialization code and drivers. The tools are said to greatly simplify and expedite the design process. There's also a suite of companion chips. And more than 30 third-party vendors are lined up to provide development tools.


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