Atmel Debuts AVR32 Application Processor for Linux-based Embedded Design

Atmel(R) Corporation (Nasdaq: ATML) announced the AT32AP7001, a member of the AVR(R)32 AP7 family of Application Processors optimized for cost constrained, Linux(R)-based embedded designs. The device is packaged in a 30 x 30mm VQFP for easy integration into a four-layer PCB design.

Examples of applications for the AT32AP7001 include printers, fax machines, surveillance cameras, audio processing and industrial control equipment. The new device is built to run the popular Linux operating system in an embedded setting. Atmel provides a free port and support of the OS and tool chain.

The AT32AP7001 is built around Atmel’s high throughput AVR32 AP7 Application Processor core and offers 210 Dhrystone v2.1 MIPS when clocked at 150 MHz and powered at 1.8V (1.4 DMIPS / MHz), with an active power consumption of 75 mA (500 uA/MHz). The core has built-in DSP, SIMD instruction set, branch prediction and MMU. The device offers Dynamic Frequency Scaling (DFS), which allows on-the-fly adjustments of the power consumption in the four on-chip clock domains (CPU, High Speed Bus, 2 independent peripheral buses).

Peripherals – On chip peripherals of the AT32AP7001 include a BT 656 compliant camera interface, three full duplex IIS audio channels, one AC97 interface, a built-in 2-channel 16-bit audio bitstream DAC, a Hi-Speed (480 Mb/s) USB device interface with 7 endpoints, a dual port MMC/SD card interface, four USARTS, two SPI interfaces, and a two-wire interface (I2C compatible). The device also offers up to 90 I/O.

The AT32AP7001 memory subsystem consists of a 32 KB on-chip high speed SRAM, 16+16 KB instruction and data caches, a memory management unit, DMA for high speed peripherals, and a peripheral DMA controller for peripherals that run on a relatively low speed. The on-chip bus matrix contains 4 independent system buses, allowing up to 1.2 GB/s throughput between CPU and peripheral memories.

Linux – Atmel provides a free port of the Linux operating system for the AVR32 AP7 family. Atmel also maintains and provides a free-of-charge port of the GCC toolchain, device drivers, and popular libraries and applications. This will facilitate the adoption of the many thousands open source and free applications available for use in embedded systems.

Tools – Unlike multicore or two-processor solutions, the AT32AP7001 has a single development environment and straightforward debugging. Compilers with C, and C++ support are available from GNU (GCC) and IAR(R) Systems (Embedded Workbench). Both compilers are SIMD- and DSP-aware and have intelligence that can identify patterns in the C-code and automatically compile the appropriate SIMD DSP instructions. Both also support access to inline assembly for tight-loop / inner-loop algorithmic optimizations.

For entry-level evaluation of the AVR32 AP7 Application Processors, Atmel recommends the AVR32 Network Gateway kit that is available now (order code ATNGW100). Customers looking for a complete reference system can also use the ATSTK1000 starter kit. Both kits offer a full evaluation of the AT32AP7000 family of parts, including the Linux, GCC and IAR toolchains.

Availability and Pricing
The AT32AP7001 is available now in a 208-pin VQFP package and is priced at US $8.00 in quantities of 10,000 pieces.

About Atmel
Atmel is a worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of microcontrollers, advanced logic, mixed-signal, nonvolatile memory and radio frequency (RF) components. Leveraging one of the industry’s broadest intellectual property (IP) technology portfolios, Atmel is able to provide the electronics industry with complete system solutions focused on consumer, industrial, security, communications, computing and automotive markets.

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