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July 21, 2009

Microchip unveils new PIC Microcontrollers

Features nanoWatt XLP technology for low power consumption

By CBR Staff Writer

Microchip Technology, a provider of microcontroller and analogue semiconductors, has unveiled the first six members of the PIC16F193X family of microcontrollers (MCUs) featuring the company’s Mid-range 8-bit core – the PIC16F1934, PIC16LF1934, PIC16F1936, PIC16LF1936, PIC16F1937 and PIC16LF1937.

According to the company, the new family extends the company’s PIC MCU portfolio of over 550 compatible members, targeting various applications in the appliance, consumer, industrial, medical and automotive markets.

Reportedly, the new microcontroller family’s memory and core capabilities provide support for both C and Assembly programmers and ‘LF’ family members feature the company’s nanoWatt XLP technology – for low power consumption. The new family also offers Direct LCD drive and support for mTouch capacitive touch-sensing products.

Steve Drehobl, vice president of security, microcontroller and technology development division at Microchip, said: “We are pleased to announce the first family of microcontrollers based upon our enhanced Mid-range 8-bit core. Building upon the worldwide customer acceptance of Microchip’s existing Mid-range 8-bit products, the new devices enable new levels of functionality at lower system cost.”

With a total of 49 instructions, the new microcontrollers reportedly optimise programme code and data handling, while increasing performance and reducing clock cycles. Future devices with the enhanced Mid-range 8-bit core are expected to be released later this year.

Some of the additional features of the new microcontroller family include: flash programme memory up to 14KB; Data RAM up to 512Bytes; 256Bytes Data EEPROM; LCD drive (up to 96 segments); Watchdog Timer (WDT) current of 500nA, and low-power 32kHz Timer1 oscillator current of 600nA, all at 1.8V; mTouch Sensing Solutions peripheral for capacitive touch sensing (16 channels, with support for up to 64 buttons); up to 14 channels of 10-bit Analog-to-Digital Conversion (ADC), among others.

Microchip offers development tools to design with the PIC16F193X microcontrollers, including the unified MPLAB IDE, along with a selection of HI-TECH C compilers. For applications with limited programme space, the Standard and PRO editions are said to offer denser code and improved performance.

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The PICkit 3 Starter Kit for the PIC16F193X enhanced core is in development, and is expected to be available in third quarter of 2009.

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