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Power Electronics

Microchip squeezes CAN MCU

Microchip Technology Inc. has introduced four 8-bit PIC18F CAN Flash microcontrollers, including one in a 28-pin, 6x6 mm QFN package that the company says is the smallest such device currently available.

Ganesh Moorthy, vice president of Microchip's Advanced Microcontroller and Memory Division, says the PIC18F4580 series devices support in-vehicle electronics trends such as power management, in-system programming, diagnostic testing, and personalized multidriver settings. Applications include body controllers, steering position sensors, cabin environmental control, and dashboard/instrument clusters.

Moorthy says the PIC18F4580 series parts complete a PIC18F migration path from 16 Kb to 64 Kb of Flash program memory and 28-pin to 80-pin package options, allowing customers to migrate easily to a more scalable CAN device with larger Flash memory.

The devices combine a small form factor with nanoWatt technology low-power modes and multiple oscillator sources for control of power and speed, and the ECAN module, which enables multiple applications to be configured on a single node and supports higher level protocols including J1939, CANopen and DeviceNet.

“The ECAN module provides benefits where the system must select, receive and process a large number of messages, and where back-to-back transmissions of large quantities of information are required,” Moorthy explains. “ECAN's FIFO mode is particularly suitable in these scenarios, because it can easily handle bursts of data, which is required by applications like bootloaders. In addition, ECAN requires almost no CPU processing time.”

The MCUs also integrate a 10-bit A/D converter, and are available with either 16 Kb or 32Kb of Flash, as well as 1.5 Kb of RAM and 256 bytes of EEPROM data memory. The PIC18F2580 and PIC18F2480 are available in 28-pin QFN, SDIP or SOIC packages and the PIC18F4580 and PIC18F4480 in a 40-pin DIP, 44-pin TQFP or QFN.

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