Electronic Design

Online Design Tool Includes Flash Microcontroller

Design analysis and simulation have been added to National Semiconductor's interactive online design and prototyping tools for its flash-based COPS8 microcontrollers. Webench 3.0 now includes a new site, microcontroller.national.com, that offers tools for real-time virtual prototyping of microcontroller-based solutions. Says Phil Gibson, National's vice president of Web business, "This first online design site for flash microcontrollers is made possible due to partnership with UNIS Ltd. of the Czech Republic. Webench 3.0 also significantly extends power-supply design to 185 W using heatsinks or surface mounting with variable copper for thermal management."

Heatsinking, added to the Webtherm online thermal simulator, lets users rapidly view the results of adding a heatsink to the board. Likewise, an existing PLL has been expanded to include simulation and customization of reference designs for the 1.8-GHz GSM and 2.4-GHz ISM wireless standards.

Webench 3.0 includes an easy-to-use object-oriented graphical integrated development environment (GIDE) for selecting the right controller and visually configuring the on-chip peripherals, registers, and interrupts. An automatic design checker validates the design and highlights potential conflicts. In addition, it offers a code IDE (CIDE) for generating fully functional code for each of the elements used in GIDE.

Webench 3.0 has a library of preconfigured embedded Java beans for each of its peripheral/controller core combinations. A firmware simulator allows debugging of code developed in CIDE. A hex file generator and download tool delivers code across the Internet to a physical target board of the user's choice.

Visit www.webench.national.com for details.

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