Freescale's Vybrid controllers offered with custom ARM development suite

July 10, 2013 // By Nick Flaherty
Freescale Semiconductor is now shipping its Vybrid microcontroller devices with a customised ARM development environment for applications that need human-machine interfaces (HMI) and connectivity as well as deterministic real-time control and response.

The Vybrid controllers are built on an asymmetrical-multiprocessing architecture platform and the ARM Development Studio 5 (DS-5) toolchain is part of the Freescale Tower System to seamlessly generate, debug and optimise code for both ARM cores in Vybrid devices.
“This custom version of the ARM DS-5 toolchain for the Freescale Tower System supports low-cost development and optimisation of systems built on Vybrid controller solutions,” said Michael Norman, technical marketing manager for software and tools strategy at Freescale. “Packaging the ARM DS-5 toolchain with the Tower System modular development platform significantly reduces the cost of market entry and gives Freescale customers access to support from the extensive ARM community to supplement the support they receive from Freescale.”
Vybrid devices are aimed at applications including simple HMI in appliances and industrial machines, secure control of infrastructure and manufacturing equipment, energy conversion applications such as motor drives and power inverters, ruggedised wired and wireless connectivity, and control of mobile battery-operated systems such as robots and industrial vehicles.
Samples of Vybrid F series VF3xx, VF5xx and VF6xx devices are now available. The Vybrid VF3xx family is a single-core (ARM Cortex-A5) solution with 1.5 MB on-chip SRAM, dual XiP quad SPI memory interface, XGA display controller, dual high-speed USB with PHY, dual Ethernet and an L2 switch. The Vybrid VF5xx family increases performance and adds a DDR2/3 memory interface. The Vybrid VF6xx family adds an ARM Cortex-M4 processor and an analogue video ADC.
Vybrid devices also provide a combination of on-chip encryption, secure boot, anti-tamper and anti-clone capabilities to secure sensitive or critical infrastructure applications such as smart grid or industrial control. By combining ARM Cortex-A5 and Cortex-M4 processors, Vybrid VF6xx devices eliminate the need for an external microcontroller (MCU) or field-programmable gate array (FPGA). With this architecture, system developers can create complex control systems with a user-friendly application HMI. This integration helps reduce development effort, component count, circuit board area and power consumption, saving