Renesas Electronics Corporation unveiled the Renesas Advanced (RA) Family of 32-bit Arm Cortex-M microcontrollers (MCUs). RA MCUs deliver the ultimate combination of optimized performance, security, connectivity, peripheral IP, and easy-to-use Flexible Software Package (FSP) to address the next generation of embedded solutions. To support the new family, Renesas has built a comprehensive partner ecosystem to deliver an array of software and hardware building blocks that will work out of the box with RA MCUs.
The RA Family ecosystem will help accelerate the development of IoT applications with core technologies such as security, safety, connectivity and HMI. Designing with RA MCUs makes it easy for engineers to develop Internet of Things (IoT) endpoint and edge devices for industrial and building automation, metering, healthcare, and home appliance applications. The RA Family is PSA Certified™ Level 1 and includes the RA2 Series (up to 60 MHz), RA4 Series (up to 100 MHz), RA6 Series (up to 200 MHz), and the dual-core RA8 Series, to be released later.
The first five RA MCU Groups available today are comprised of 32 scalable MCUs with Arm Cortex-M4 and Cortex-M23 processor cores. They feature pin counts of 32-pins to 176-pins, along with 256 KB to 2 MB of code flash memory, 32 KB to 640 KB SRAM, and connectivity such as USB, CAN and Ethernet. It is easy to transition within the RA Family thanks to feature and pin compatibility. Each RA MCU Group provides superior active and standby power, and enhanced features such as Renesas’ popular HMI capacitive touch technology.
The RA Family FSP provides an open architecture that allows customers to re-use their legacy code and combine it with software examples from Renesas and ecosystem partners to speed implementation of complex functions like connectivity and security. The FSP features Amazon FreeRTOS and will also add out-of-box support for ThreadX RTOS and middleware on Cortex-M23 and Cortex-M33 MCUs by early 2020, offering a premium device-to-cloud option for developers. These out-of-box options can be easily replaced and expanded with any other RTOS or middleware.
The RA Family roadmap will roll out additional MCUs in 2020 with more advanced technologies, unique features, and a growing partner ecosystem. The roadmap offers PSA Certified and Trusted Firmware-M (TF-M) API compliant devices, including Cortex-M33 MCUs, low-power Cortex-M23 MCUs, and BLE / IEEE 802.15.4 wireless IoT products. MCUs with TF-M / PSA certification will give customers the confidence and assurance to quickly deploy secure IoT endpoint and edge devices, and smart factory equipment for Industry 4.0.
The first wave of RA devices incorporates hardware-based security features from simple AES acceleration to fully-integrated crypto subsystems isolated within the MCU. The Secure Crypto Engine provides symmetric and asymmetric encryption and decryption, hash functions, true random number generation (TRNG), and advanced key handling, including key generation and MCU-unique key wrapping. An access management circuit shuts down the crypto engine if the correct access protocol is not followed, and dedicated RAM ensures that plaintext keys are never exposed to any CPU or peripheral bus. The RA Family development environment offers on-chip debug, IDEs, compiler, support tools, board evaluation kits, design files, schematics, PCB layouts and BOM.
The first five RA MCU Groups are available now from Renesas Electronics’ worldwide distributors with prices ranging from $2.50 USD to $7.00 USD in 10,000-unit quantities. For more information on the RA Family, please visit: https://www.renesas.com/ra.