Microchip Technology introduced their Microstick II development tool. The flexible USB-powered tool features an integrated debugger and programmer, user LED, reset button, and DUT socket for easy device swapping. The Microchip Microstick II supports 3.3V 16-bit and 32-bit PIC microcontrollers (MCUs), and 16-bit dsPIC Digital Signal Controllers (DSCs) in 28-pin SPDIP packages. The development tool is available now.
IAR Systems introduced a KickStart Kit for Freescale Semiconductor’s ARM Cortex-M4 based Kinetis microcontrollers. The IAR KickStart Kit for Kinetis K60 enables rapid evaluation of and prototyping with the Kinetis microcontroller family. The kit is compatible with the Freescale Tower System development platform. The starter kit is ideal for industrial control, medical, and consumer electronics applications. The IAR KickStart Kit for Kinetis K60 includes hardware boards, debug probe, software tools and code examples. It is available now for $239 USD (190 EUR).
Universal Debug Engine (UDE) 3.0 is the latest debugging tool from PLS Programmierbare Logik & Systeme. UDE 3.0 features unique visualization capabilities, an enhanced Eclipse integration and extensive dedicated support for a wide range of high-end microcontroller architectures. Universal Debug Engine 3.0 is available for all 32-bit and 64-bit versions from Windows XP to Windows 7. The tool can be integrated at no extra cost in Eclipse environments based on Ganymede 3.4.x, Galileo 3.5.x and Helios 3.6 with the appropriate C/C++-IDE (CDT 5.0.x,6.0,7.0).
The IQmath Library for microcontrollers, from Texas Instruments (TI), now supports both the 32-bit C2000 and Stellaris MCU platforms. The TI IQmath Library is an optimized collection of high-precision mathematical functions. The library enables programmers to seamlessly port floating-point algorithms into fixed-point code. Developers can use the software to achieve execution speeds considerably faster than equivalent code written in standard ANSI C language. The IQmath Library speeds development and addresses the limitations of fixed-point math by eliminating time-consuming scaling and saturation burdens. IQmath software is free and available for download through StellarisWare software or C2000 controlSUITE software.
Renesas Electronics recently announced their RX Design Contest. The Renesas RX Design Contest is an opportunity for embedded engineers to showcase their skills in any type of design using an RX MCU. One thousand RX62N Renesas Demonstration Kits (RDKs) will be available to contestants for free. The use of the RDK is encouraged, but not required. The top prize is $5000 and there are over $110,000 in cash and prizes. The deadline to enter the Renesas RX Design Contest is March 4, 2011.
Texas Instruments (TI) rolled out the Stellaris 13.56 MHz RFID Wireless Kit ($99), Stellaris 2.4 GHz SimpliciTI Wireless Kit ($125), and Stellaris ZigBee Networking Kit ($249). The kits are based on the Stellaris ARM Cortex-M3-based microcontrollers (MCU). The Stellaris kits include software and reference design solutions for adding RFID, low-power RF and ZigBee capabilities to designs. The three wireless desing kits are available for order now. The Stellaris EM2 Expansion Board is also available for $39.
Texas Instruments (TI) introduced their C2000 MCU Teaching ROM and enhanced floating-point F28335 Delfino microcontroller (MCU) Peripheral Explorer Kit. The free C2000 Teaching ROM is a comprehensive guide to C2000 MCUs. It also provides an introduction to real-time control design considerations. The Teaching ROM and Peripheral Explorer Kit will help engineers to leverage the performance of C2000 MCUs to develop more energy-efficient real-time control applications, such as motor control, digital power, renewable energy, and lighting. The F28335 Peripheral Explorer Kit (TMDSPREXF28335) is priced at $179 US and is available now. The C2000 Teaching ROM can downloaded now.
Silicon Laboratories launched a web-based library of schematic symbols and printed-circuit board (PCB) footprints. The online symbol library features PCB footprints and schematic symbols that are available for download in a vendor neutral format. The library speeds the development of embedded system applications based on Silicon Labs’ embedded mixed-signal products.
Semtech and Microchip Technology introduced the SX1230-13RKEA433 turnkey reference design for multi-band wireless remote keyless entry (RKE) systems. The reference design integrates Semtech’s transmitter and transceiver ICs with Microchip’s KEELOQ code-hopping technology running on PIC microcontrollers (MCUs). The platform is ideal for the development of secure, high-performance and cost-effective RKE systems for vehicles, office buildings, and homes. SX1230-13RKEA433 provides a single platform that works across virtually all major frequency regulations. The reference design kit is available now from Semtech.
Texas Instruments (TI) launched their open source MSP430 MCU Value Line LaunchPad development kit. The LaunchPad kit includes the hardware and software needed to create designs based on TI’s MSP430 Value Line MCUs. LaunchPad supports rapid prototyping and development by enabling developers to quickly drop-in MSP430 Value Line MCUs to evaluate, program or debug devices. The new MSP430 MCU Value Line LaunchPad development kit (MSP-EXP430G2) is priced at $4.30. TI’s MSP430 Value Line MCUs start at 25 cents and offer up to 10X performance and 10X battery life over 8-bit MCUs.