Microchip Debuts 8-bit Microcontrollers with Embedded Optimized Ethernet

Microchip Technology Inc. (NASDAQ:MCHP), a leading provider of microcontroller and analog semiconductors, today announced a family of the world’s smallest 8-bit microcontrollers with an integrated IEEE 802.3-compliant Ethernet communications peripheral. The PIC18F97J60 family is optimized for embedded applications, and has an on-chip Medium Access Controller (MAC) and Physical Layer Device (PHY). By integrating a 10BASE-T Ethernet controller onto a 10 MIPS PIC18 microcontroller with up to 128 Kbytes of Flash program memory, Microchip is providing embedded systems designers with a single-chip remote-communication solution for a wide range of applications.

Embedded engineers have long wanted to add remote monitoring and communication to their embedded designs, but previous solutions were expensive and complex. Due to Microchip’s integration of its PIC18 high-end 8-bit microcontroller with a complete Ethernet controller, including MAC, PHY and transmit/receive RAM buffer, designers can now have network connectivity in 64- to 100-pin packages that is one of the most cost effective and easiest to use Ethernet solutions. And, Microchip offers a free TCP/IP software stack to reduce development time.

“The need to access embedded applications remotely using Ethernet can be fully realized through the selection of the PIC18F97J60 family,” said Mitch Obolsky, vice president of Microchip’s Advanced Microcontroller Architecture Division. “Combined with our free TCP/IP stack, the introduction of the high-performance PIC18F97J60 family enables microcontroller-based applications to be cost-effectively monitored or controlled from a remote location.”

Ethernet is the leading networking technology for local area networks (LANs), and it can be used to connect embedded devices through a LAN to the Internet. By adding Ethernet connectivity to an embedded system, microcontrollers can distribute data over a network and can be controlled remotely. Ethernet’s infrastructure, performance, interoperability, scalability and ease of development have made it a standard choice for embedded communications.

Any embedded application that requires Ethernet connectivity for communication or monitoring can take advantage of Microchip’s nine-member PIC18F97J60 microcontroller family. Specific application examples include: Industrial Automation (Industrial Control, Power-Supply Monitoring, Network/Server Monitoring, Environmental Monitoring); Building Automation (Fire & Safety, Access Control, Security Panels, Lighting Control, VoIP Intercom); Commercial Control (Kitchen Appliances, Drink Dispensers, Hotel Minibars, POS Terminals); Home Control (Security, Networked Appliances).

Key features for all nine members of the PIC18F97J60 8-bit microcontroller family include:

  • Seamless Migration: flexibility to add Ethernet connectivity to existing PIC18 designs with minimal cost and development time
  • IEEE 802.3-Compliant: on-chip 10BASE-T MAC and PHY provides reliable packet-data transmission/reception based on an industry standard for Ethernet
  • Dedicated 8-Kbyte Ethernet Buffer: flexible buffer enables efficient packet storage, retrieval and modification, and reduces memory requirements for the integrated microcontroller
  • 128 Kbytes of Flash and 4 Kbytes SRAM: large memory accommodates TCP/IP stack with Web server, leaving ample space for user application code

Development Tools
The PIC18F97J60 PICDEM.net(TM) 2 Development Board (part # DM163024), available now for $165, was created specifically to speed development with these new integrated microcontrollers. And, the latest version of Microchip’s free PIC18 TCP/IP Ethernet Stack can be downloaded. Additionally, Microchip’s world-class suite of development tools is compatible with this new family of microcontrollers, including the MPLAB(R) VDI visual device initializer, Application Maestro(TM) software, MPLAB ICD 2 in-circuit debugger and the MPLAB C18 C compiler.

Availability and Pricing
In the RoHS-compliant packages listed below, all nine members of the PIC18F97J60 microcontroller family are available now for general sampling at sample.microchip.com and volume production at www.microchipdirect.com, starting at $4.24 each in 10,000-unit quantities. For additional information, contact any Microchip sales representative or authorized worldwide distributor, or visit Microchip’s Web site.

  • PIC18F97J60/96J65/96J60: 100-pin TQFP
  • PIC18F87J60/86J65/86J60: 80-pin TQFP
  • PIC18F67J60/66J65/66J60: 64-pin TQFP

Microchip Customer Support
Microchip is committed to supporting its customers by helping design engineers develop products faster and more efficiently. Customers can access four main service areas at www.microchip.com. The Support area provides a fast way to get questions answered; the Sample area offers free evaluation samples of any Microchip device; microchipDIRECT provides 24-hour pricing, ordering, inventory and credit for convenient purchasing of all Microchip devices and development tools; finally, the Training area educates customers through webinars, sign-ups for local seminar and workshop courses, and information about the annual MASTERs events held throughout the world.

About Microchip Technology
Microchip Technology Inc. (NASDAQ:MCHP) is a leading provider of microcontroller and analog semiconductors, providing low-risk product development, lower total system cost and faster time to market for thousands of diverse customer applications worldwide. Headquartered in Chandler, Arizona, Microchip offers outstanding technical support along with dependable delivery and quality.

The Microchip name and logo, PIC, and MPLAB are registered trademarks of Microchip Technology Inc. in the USA and other countries. Application Maestro, and PICDEM.net are trademarks of Microchip Technology Inc.