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16-bit MCUs

Two CAN interfaces

Renesas announced the RL78/F15 group of 16-bit micro-controllers. Intended for vehicle control systems such as body control modules (BCMs), air conditioners, and power seats, where functionality is advancing.

The RL78/F15 group supports 125 ℃ (target) operation, whereby a CPU clock of 24 MHz can be reached (Photo: Renesas)

PART OF THE RL78 SERIES of micro-controllers (MCUs), the RL78/F15 product lineup includes an added 144-pin package; packages with pin counts of 48-pins and above come with up to 512 KiB of on-chip flash memory. When combined with the current RL78/F13 and RL78/F14 groups, the resulting lineup includes a total of 127 product versions with pin counts ranging from 20 pins to 144 pins, enabling system manufacturers to select an MCU that fits their system requirements.

Two CAN channels are provided, allowing CAN communication to be used independently for control and diagnostics. In addition, there are up to three hardware LIN channels, which is suitable for applications requiring centralized control of communication, such as body control modules (BCMs). Finally, support for IEBus (Inter Equipment Bus) makes it possible to accommodate car audio applications in the vehicle information field.

Since it contains the same CPU core (32 MHz), the RL78/F15 group is software compatible with the RL78/F13 and RL78/F14 groups, thereby system manufactures can select these products with future functional extension in mind. According to the company, the added specifications simplify dealing with cases where memory capacity or pin count eventually becomes inadequate.

Today's vehicles are equipped with numerous electronic control units (ECUs) associated with all sorts of functions, such as power windows, airbags, lamps, doors, and seats. As a result, the burden of developing software for these ECUs is increasing, and the ability to use common software for multiple ECUs is growing in importance as a way to improve development efficiency. The 36 product versions of the RL78/F15 group extend the RL78 family of 16-bit MCUs for vehicle control. By adopting these MCUs in multiple ECUs, system manufactures can utilize common software resources and thereby boost development efficiency, says the company.

Samples of the micro-controllers are now available in 36 product versions. Pricing varies depending on the package. For example, the RL78/F15 with 48-pin package and 512 KiB of on-chip flash memory is priced at $7,00 per unit. Mass production is scheduled to begin in July 2016 and is expected to reach a volume of one million units per month for all product versions combined in July 2017.

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