Renesas expands MCU family with entry level low power devices




Renesas has introduced a new family of entry level microcontrollers (MCU) for cost-sensitive applications and systems requiring high performance and low-energy consumption in space-constrained applications.

Based on the 48-MHz Arm Cortex-M23 core, the new RA2E1 MCUs are entry level, single-chip devices with up to 128-KB code flash and 16-KB SRAM memory. Comprising 48 devices, the new group of products supports an operating voltage range of 1.6V to 5.5V and a large selection of packages such as LQFP, QFN, LGA, BGA and wafer level chip scale package (WLCSP).

They deliver optimized combinations of performance, ultra-low-power consumption, innovative peripherals and small package options.  The upgraded low power capability in the RA2E1 MCUs cover all on-chip peripherals, the flash memory and SRAM. Renesas said this capability allows the smallest possible power consumption over the devices’ entire temperature and voltage range. System design flexibility is maximized across diverse applications via multiple low power modes. When benchmarked for power consumption, the RA2E1 MCU was certified with an EEMBC ULPMark score of 321 at 1.8V, verifying its best-in-class power rating. Users can now minimize active power consumption close to standby levels to extend battery life.

The new MCUs offer an upgrade path with hardware and software scalability, making them a suitable entry point into the wider line-up of the Renesas RA family.

Block diagram of the Renesas RA2E1 MCU superset
Block diagram of the RA2E1 group MCU superset (Image: Renesas)

Key features

Key features of the RA2E1 MCUs include:

  • 48 MHz Arm Cortex-M23 CPU core
  • Integrated flash memory options from 32KB to 128KB; and 16KB RAM
  • Support for wide operating voltage range: 1.6V – 5.5V
  • Pin counts from 25- to 64-pin
  • Package options including LQFP, QFN, LGA, BGA and WLCSP (2.14 x 2.27mm)
  • Low power operation: 100µA/MHz in active mode; 250 nA in software standby
  • Integrated next generation innovative capacitive touch sensing unit with no external components required, lowering BOM costs
  • Enables system costs reduction with on-chip peripheral functions, including a high precision (1.0 percent) internal oscillator, background operation data flash supporting 1 million erase/program cycles, high-current IO ports, and a temperature sensor
  • Pin and peripheral compatibility with RA2L1 Group devices for quick and easy upgrade paths

The RA2E1 MCUs also offer an IEC60730 self-test library and feature integrated safety functions that provide confirmation of normal operation. Customers can use these safety functions to perform MCU self-diagnostics. In addition, the RA2E1 devices include an AES cryptography accelerator, true random number generator (TRNG) and memory protection units that provide the fundamental blocks to develop a secure internet of things (IoT) system.

The RA2E1 Group is supported by the Flexible Software Package (FSP), which includes a best-in-class HAL driver. The FSP uses a GUI to simplify and accelerate the development process, while also making it easy for customers to transition from an original 8/16-bit MCU design. Designers using the RA2E1 MCUs also have access to the extensive Arm partner ecosystem, offering a wide range of tools that help speed time-to-market.

The RA2E1 MCUs can be combined with Renesas’ complementary analog and power offerings to create comprehensive solutions for a variety of applications. Renesas has released a series of what it calls these “winning combinations” that include Arm core processors and are suitable for the low-cost, low pin-count and low-power of the RA2E1 MCUs. The RA2E1 kits also support new extended PMOD connectors to facilitate modular IoT using sensor PMODs and RF connectivity PMODs.


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Original article: Renesas expands MCU family with entry level low power devices
Author: Nitin Dahad