Renesas bases detector design kit on low-power RL78/I1D MCU

February 19, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Continuing its series of pre-configured design kits for specific application areas, Renesas has added the Detect it! solution kit. The Detect it! is designed for detector applications and provides ready to use demonstrators for the most typical detectors used in security and fire protection systems.

Detect it! has four hardware boards, a motion detector demonstrator, a smoke detector demonstrator, a carbon monoxide demonstrator, and a glass-break detector demonstrator.

The kit provides a complete platform for Renesas’ RL78/I1D microcontroller group. The RL78/I1D devices offer a comprehensive set of analogue features. The 48-pin package includes four operational amplifiers, two comparators and 17 input channels for the 12-bit ADC converter. The RL78/I1D has peripherals that are able to work without CPU intervention: in low power modes they offer a significant power saving. The smart peripherals can transfer data, compare data, perform addition and subtraction and link one peripherals operation to another peripheral. This offers new possibilities to developers of detector applications. Power consumption has also been further reduced compared to previous generations, achieving 124 µA @1 MHz in operation. Fast wake-up time reduces power consumption and enables the device to react faster, with benefits for communication protocols.

Each of the boards provides a solution for the associated detectors. The smoke detector senses smoky environments by the scattering of the infrared signal in a smoke chamber. Motion is detected using PIR technology. The glass-break detector analyses sounds and can differentiate window-break sounds from the surrounding environment. The carbon monoxide detector uses a chemical sensor to measure the concentration of the gas in the surrounding air and generates an alert if the levels are dangerously high. The documentation provided within the kit guides the user and explains the board behaviour in detail.

The Detect it! kit is ready for use ‘out of the box’. Users simply choose the board and insert a battery (included in the kit), follow the quick start guide and can get a detector working in less than one minute. The kit provides a starting point to the developer as it includes the source code of the demonstration sample programs, the environment development installer of IAR Embedded Workbench, the Gerber files and the schematics, and a comprehensive