2014-04-10  Semiconductor ICs   

SAM D Microcontrollers

The new ATMEL “SAM D” family of microcontrollers builds on an ARM Cortex- M0+ core. In developing these products, ATMEL has drawn on long years of experience with the AVR series to create these new controllers, which are leading the way to the future. These products set a new benchmark in flexibility and simplicity in development work. The performance and energy efficiency of the ARM Cortex M0+ core has been combined with an optimized chip hardware and periphery, making these products ideal for many low-power and cost-sensitive industrial applications.

So what are the key functions of these ATMEL products?

The controller operates at up to 48 MHz, and pulses the ARM Cortex M0+ core with its basic performance value of 2.14 CoreMark/MHz. Available peripherals are a single cycle I/O access, event system, DMA, internal and external oscillators, configurable communication modules, timer/counter, touch controller, RTC, ADC’s, I2S and USB device and host. Particular attention has also been paid to compatibility within the sub-families. This means that it is easily possible to move between the different package variants; for example, with the TQFP package, the pins for the supply, the analog pins, etc. are always located on the same side flank of the package.

The product portfolio of the ATMEL “Sam D” family consists at present of four sub-families. The smallest modules are grouped in the “SAM D10” family, and the largest at the present time are known as the “SAM D21”.

The graphic provides a good overview of the differences between them. The graphic uses some abbreviations which are specific to ATMEL:

SERCOM stands for Serial Communication Module. This is a module which can be converted by the user into a USART, I2C or SPI interface. The output pins on the package can also be selected by means of an I/O multiplexer for the respective interface involved, so increasing flexibility in the layout.

PTC stands for Peripheral Touch Controller. This is an interface which allows for simple implementation of capacitive touch buttons, sliders and wheels.

for Control is a special timer/counter module for use in power supply systems as well as applications in the light and motor control sectors. In these contexts, the module supports frequencies of up to 96 Mhz, and also operates with up to 24 bit resolution.

For rapid implementation in the customer’s design, the hardware available includes extremely economical Xplained Pro Boards. On the software side, ATMEL Studio is available as a fully integrated solution for programming and debugging. ATMEL Studio also supplies drivers and a huge range of examples.

Have we aroused your interest in this product family? Just ask us for any more information you need.

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