Renesas develops Synergy platform for IoT designs

February 18, 2016 // By Graham Prophet
Expanding its Synergy platform, that is intended to allow system designers to spend as much time as possible on end-applications, and to provide a higher proportion of design ‘infrastructure’ elements ready-made, Renesas has added the S124 Group of Synergy Microcontrollers (MCUs) with ultra-low power operating characteristics and precise analogue signal acquisition/generation capabilities, configured for sensor applications.

In support of these MCUs is an updated version of the Synergy Software Package (SSP) and the e² studio Integrated Solution Development Environment (ISDE) tool. The SSP and e² studio tool also incorporate further enhancements that address the entire Synergy Platform adding new capabilities for networking, industrial automation, power management and automated configuration to save more time for embedded system developers.

“The Synergy Platform continues to grow in value to both developers and their end-customers,” said Mark Rootz, Marketing Director of Renesas' Internet of Things business unit. “This new S124 Synergy MCU Group is another example of platform growth that brings ARM Cortex-M0+ based MCUs to the lower end of the application spectrum while remaining completely scalable and compatible with the companion Cortex-M4 based Synergy MCU groups above it that we launched last year [2015]. Software support for these new S124 MCUs is there by expansion of the SSP enabling customers to migrate between all Synergy MCU groups as their needs change and still be able to re-use existing application code.”

Synergy MCUs in the S124 Group are based on Renesas' ultra-low power technology consuming 70.3 µA per MHz of MCU clock speed for extremely long battery life in low power and battery-powered portable applications. These MCUs carry advanced analogue signal capabilities with 14-bit ADCs, 12-bit DACs, and low power comparators. User interface applications are supported with more than 30 channels of capacitive touch sensing inputs. Connectivity is expanded by USB-FS and CAN interfaces, plus safety and security are assisted with on-chip support for SRAM parity checking, a NIST-compliant True Random Number Generator (TRNG), and AES-256 cryptography with chaining. MCU packages are as small as 4 x 4 mm for space-constrained end-products. Typical applications envisaged by Renesas include smart edge-node IoT sensors, home appliance control and point-of-sale terminals.

Development support for the S124 Group of Synergy MCUs and the DK-S124 development kit is provided in SSP version 1.1.0 and e²