BANGALORE, INDIA: Texas Instruments Inc. (TI) has introduced two new programmable real-time unit (PRU) daughter cards and free software that allow customers to add differentiated peripherals and design flexibility for reduced development costs to extend the functionality of their AM1x Sitara ARM microprocessor-based systems.
The universal asynchronous receiver/transmitters (UART) PRU and controller area network lite (CAN-lite) PRU daughter cards can be used in evaluation with the AM1x Sitara ARM MPUs or as a standalone reference design to jumpstart customers’ product development. The daughter cards simply snap into the PRU peripheral connection on the AM1x Sitara ARM MPUs evaluation modules, and once the software is loaded, customers have additional design flexibility for embedded industrial, medical and consumer designs.
The AM1x Sitara ARM MPUs come in a variety of performance and power options and support multiple industry-specific peripherals and interfaces. The addition of these daughter cards further enhance the ability to address the needs of systems requiring:
• UARTs: The UART PRU daughter card and software increases the number of UARTs available from three on-chip UARTs to 11 (three on-chip and a maximum of eight created through software) with free production quality code, optimized for complex, highly connected designs. For example, in a point-of-service or portable data terminal application, there may be a need for several UARTs. Instead of buying separate interfaces for each of the extra capabilities (keypad, printer, LED bank), designers can simply use the PRU daughter card.
• CAN-lite: The CAN-lite PRU daughter card and software provides soft and hard CAN bus interfaces. CAN interfaces allow microprocessors and their applications to communicate with each other without a host computer in high-noise industrial environments. The PRU CAN-lite interface abides by the BOSCH CAN Specification 2.0B rules.
With these PRU daughter cards, TI provides free, optimized software to help reduce development time and costs. The tested software code ensures developers can focus on their intellectual property, rather than spending large amounts of time writing code. Developers can simply install their application software and begin development immediately.
PRUs are common peripherals on all AM1x Sitara ARM MPUs and future devices in the product line. Future AM1x Sitara ARM MPU devices will also offer PRU daughter card peripherals and software that will extend to both future versions or the AM1x product line and future TI ARM Cortex-A8 based products.