USB Type-C reference design comes fully certified

June 01, 2016 // By Graham Prophet
Silicon Labs has a reference design that reduces the cost and complexity of developing cables and cable adapters based on the USB Type-C specification. It uses the company’s EFM8 microcontrollers, and includes USB Power Delivery (PD) protocol stacks certified by the USB Implementation Forum (USB-IF), and USB Billboard Device source code.

The rapid adoption of USB Type-C (USB-C) in laptops and monitors is driving demand for dongles and adapters to connect with legacy and existing products. Silicon Labs says its reference design provides a complete solution for a USB Type-C to DisplayPort (DP) adapter, making it easy to communicate with legacy products that do not support USB-C. Available to qualified developers at no charge, the reference design includes schematics, software libraries and stacks, source code, code examples and access to Simplicity Studio development tools , enabling developers to design USB-C cables and adapters quickly, easily and at minimal cost.


USB-C supports multiple protocols and is backwards-compatible with USB 3.0 and 2.0 protocols. However, Silabs says, the simplicity and versatility of USB-C technology can pose design challenges for developers because the once-simple inner workings of USB cables, ports, dongles and hubs must now be replaced with more complex embedded components. Silicon Labs offers several single-chip connectivity bridge solutions to support USB to serial protocols as well as specialized bridges for human interface device (HID) class and capacitive touch applications. The company also supports USB connectivity through its EFM8 8-bit MCU portfolio and EFM32 Gecko 32-bit MCU portfolio .

The USB Type-C reference design deliverables (schematics, PD stack library, billboard device source code and sample code) are available now to qualified developers at no charge.


Silicon Labs;