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© shawn hempel dreamstime.com Business | November 05, 2012

Cortus with smallest 32-bit Microcontroller IP core

Cortus claims to have released the world’s smallest 32-bit microcontroller IP core – the APS1. The launch of the silicon efficient, low cost APS1 completes Cortus’ 2012 processor roadmap.

The Cortus APS1 is a native 32-bit core with a modern RISC architecture. In common with other Cortus processors, the APS1 has a 5 to 7 stage integer pipeline with out-of-order completion ensuring that most integer instructions (load and stores included) are executed in a single cycle. It is the fourth member of the Cortus microcontroller IP core family to be released in 2012 complementing the larger energy efficient APS3R, high performance APS5 and the floating point FPS6 cores. “We are proud to break our own record in terms of 32-bit core size”, said Michael Chapman, CEO and President of Cortus. He adds, “Our first product – the APS3 – pioneered the market for silicon efficient 32-bit processor cores and with the APS1 we have an even more compact core”. Michael Chapman explains, “With the APS1 released, there is almost no reason to continue to use 8-bit cores. SoC developers benefit from an easier SW development cycle, more performance and lower power consumption”. The APS1 has a fully 32-bit architecture with 16 general purpose registers. Its CPU gatecount starts at about 6800 gates. In the TSMC 90 nm technology this can be as small as 0.03 mm2 (Dolphin SESAME-HD library). As a member of the Cortus family of processors, the APS1 interfaces to all of Cortus’ peripherals including the Ethernet 10/100 MAC, USB 2.0 Device and USB 2.0 OTG via the efficient APS bus. It also shares the simple vectored interrupt structure which ensures rapid, real time interrupt response, with low software overhead. The APS toolchain and IDE (for C and C++) are available to licensees free of charge, and it can be customised and branded for final customer use. Ports of various RTOSs are available such as FreeRTOS, Micrium µC/OS.
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