Atmel Corporation - MCU Wireless

By: Meshnetics  09-12-2011

Built for Today’s Connected Applications

In an increasingly connected world, wireless connectivity is more essential than ever. Consumers demands are escalating as wireless extends from PC peripherals and home entertainment applications to the Smart Grid and beyond. To support these sophisticated applications, Atmel offers a complete line of IEEE 802.15.4-compliant, IPv6/6LoWPAN based, ZigBee certified wireless solutions. They are based on Atmel’s rich family of RF transceivers, 8-bit and 32-bit AVR, and ARM microcontrollers. To ease development and speed time to market, Atmel offers a variety of free software stacks, reference designs, wireless modules and development kits. Together, Atmel solutions and tools provide everything you need to meet the unique needs of low-cost, low-power, wireless control and sensor network applications.

Key Features

  • Single-Chip Solutions — The Atmel IEEE 802.15.4-compliant single-chip solution combines the industry's leading AVR microcontroller and best-in-class 2.4GHz RF transceiver. It is ideal for applications requiring minimal board space and cost — without compromising on MCU and RF performance.
  • Transceivers — Our wide range of high performance, low-power IEEE 802.15.4-compliant transceivers support regional 700/800/900MHz frequency bands available in China, Europe and North America, as well as the 2.4GHz band available worldwide. For maximum flexibility, these unique RF transceivers can be combined with any of Atmel's award winning microcontrollers over the SPI Interface.
  • Bundles — Flexible IEEE 802.15.4-compliant bundles make it easy to create a solution that is perfectly aligned to your application needs. Select the Atmel MCU that provides the features and functionality you need, and combine it with one of Atmel's best-in-class RF transceivers for a complete end product that is optimized for your customers’ needs.
  • Modules — ZigBits are compact 802.15.4/ZigBee modules featuring record-breaking range performance and exceptional ease of integration. ZigBits also pack a complete FCC/CE/ARIB certified RF design that eliminates costly and time-consuming RF development and gets your product to market on-time and on-budget.

MCU Wireless Devices

Device Family Summary Benefits Applications Technologies Key Parameters

Combines the industry's leading AVR® microcontroller and a best-in-class 2.4GHz RF transceiver in industry's best single-chip design

IEEE 802.15.4 and ZigBee applications

IEEE 802.15.4 compliant

The IEEE 802.15.4-compliant Atmel single-chip combines the industry's leading AVR® microcontroller and a best-in-class 2.4GHz RF transceiver to deliver the industry's best single-chip design.

The ATmega128RFA1 is the leading device in this new single-chip family, and the most efficient device on the market. It delivers a robust combination of low current consumption in all operating modes; degradation-free supply voltage range down to 1.8V; and fast wake-up time from SLEEP mode to active modes. A variety of power-down modes, such as a wake-on-radio feature, which keeps RF transceiver active while the microcontroller sleeps, further enhance efficiency.

Boost Your Overall System Performance

The radio interface offers a unique hardware feature set to boost the overall system performance and to support a wide range of IEEE 802.15.4-compliant applications. An antenna diversity feature enhances reliability by automatically selecting the best signal from two antennas for each incoming frame. The device supports the control of external power amplifiers for range extension. High data rate modes up to 2 Mbit/s are available to support general purpose 2.4 GHz ISM applications.

A low-power single-chip design lets you implement the latest battery driven systems, save board space, and reduce bill of materials (BOM). System development is supported by Atmel's free software stacks, libraries and hardware evaluation and development kits.

Supported by the QTouch® Library, ATmega128RFA1 makes it easy to combine capacitive touch functionality with RF in a single chip.

Delivers the leading RF link budget with the industry's lowest power consumption

IEEE 802.15.4
ZigBee applications
Proprietary ISM

IEEE 802.15.4 compliant

Antenna diversity

external power amplifier

700/800/900 MHz or 2.4GHz bands

Up tp 2Mbit/s on-air data rates

Efficient wireless applications require both high-performance and power efficiency. Atmel transceivers deliver the leading RF link budget with the industry’s lowest power consumption.

What's more, Atmel offers the most feature-rich IEEE 802.15.4-compliant transceiver family available. Our transceivers support both regional 700/800/900 MHz, as well as global 2.4GHz frequency bands, enabling you to develop wireless applications for customers worldwide, including emerging markets like China.

Enhanced Performance

Powerful hardware features like antenna diversity or external power amplifier support let you further boost transceiver performance to maximize network reliability and RF range of your system. Atmel MCU wireless transceivers support not only IEEE 802.15.4-compliant applications, but provide on-air data rates up to 2 Mbit/s for general purpose ISM applications. Pin compatibility ensures an easy transition between devices or frequency bands.

To help you speed system development and prototyping, Atmel offers a variety of free software suites, various hardware evaluation and development kits and Modules.

Key Products

The AT86RF212 is a low-power, low-voltage RF transceiver for the regional 700/800/900 MHz frequency bands available in China, Europe and North America. This transceiver offers an extreme 120 dB link budget (-110 dBm receiver sensitivity / +10 dBm transmit power) designed for low-cost IEEE 802.15.4, ZigBee, and high data rate ISM applications.

The AT86RF230 is a low-power 2.4 GHz transceiver specially designed for low cost IEEE 802.15.4, ZigBee and 6LoWPAN applications. The AT86RF230 is a true SPI-to-antenna solution. All RF-critical components except the antenna, crystal and de-coupling capacitors are integrated on-chip.

The AT86RF231 is a feature rich, low-power 2.4 GHz transceiver designed for industrial and consumer IEEE 802.15.4, ZigBee, 6LoWPAN and high data rate 2.4 GHz ISM band applications. The transceiver is a true SPI-to-antenna solution. All RF-critical components except the antenna, crystal and de-coupling capacitors are integrated on-chip.

Pair any transceivers with a microcontroller to fit your application requirements

Metering

IEEE 802.15.4 and ZigBee applications

IEEE 802.15.4 compliant

700/800/900 MHz or 2.4GHz bands

64 to 256 Kbytes Flash

Atmel offers flexible IEEE 802.15.4-compliant bundles that make it easy to create a solution that is optimized to meet your customer needs. Simply choose the Atmel MCU that is best-suited to your application, application and combine it with one of Atmel's best-in-class RF transceivers to get an optimal solution for your end product.

Advanced Communication for Metering

For example,

are a rapidly-growing market as the Smart Grid gains maturity. RF communication is key for gas and water meters, because of the increasing availability of the AMI architecture, with the Smart Electricity Meter often acting as the gateway to the utility for meter reading. Gas and water meters require secure communication with the Smart Meter over the Home Area Network.

When paired with an 8- or 16-bit microcontroller with ultra-low power and integrated LCD segment drive support, developers can rapidly build an application that is ideal for the growing metering market.

Flexible Bundles for a Range of Applications

Atmel offers several RF bundle solutions that let you combine selected Atmel microcontrollers with an Atmel best-in-class RF transceiver: AT86RF212 for the regional 700/800/900 MHz bands, and AT86RF230 and AT86RF231 for the worldwide 2.4GHz frequency band. These transceivers are true SPI-to-antenna solutions that comprise the only requirement for the MCU to feature SPI Serial Interface.

Our flexible solutions let you to pick the microcontroller that is best-suited for your target application and combine it with the RF transceivers that features your RF requirements. The three RF transceivers are pin-compatible, making it easy when RF requirement change to replace the RF transceiver and reuse the microcontroller application.


Support for Capacitive Touch

Today's sophisticated consumers demand intelligent touch interfaces. By choosing one of Atmel's bundles or combine any of the QTouch Library supported tinyAVRs, megaAVRs, XMEGAs or UC3 devices with Atmel's Transceivers, you can easily add capacitive touch functionality to your RF applications.

Atmel offers a broad portfolio of predefined bundles with separate ordering codes.


ZigBits are compact 802.15.4/ZigBee modules featuring record-breaking range performance and exceptional ease of integration.

IEEE 802.15.4 and ZigBee applications

IEEE 802.15.4 compliant

Antenna diversity

external power amplifier

700/800/900 MHz or 2.4GHz bands

ZigBits are compact 802.15.4/ZigBee modules featuring record-breaking range performance and exceptional ease of integration. ZigBits also pack a complete FCC/CE/ARIB certified RF design that eliminates costly and time-consuming RF development and gets your product to market on-time and on-budget.

Pull Ahead of the Competition!

Atmel backs its MCU wireless portfolio with innovative modules and software stacks to enable you to take the initiative in rapidly developing products for your marketplace. Standards-based and easy to use, these resources give you the agility and tools you need to maintain your competitive edge.

ZigBit Modules Speed Time to Market

ZigBits are compact 802.15.4/ZigBee modules that deliver record-breaking range performance and exceptional ease of integration. ZigBits also pack a complete FCC/CE/ARIB certified RF design that eliminates costly and time-consuming RF development and gets your product to market on-time and on-budget.

When combined with bundled IEEE 802.15.4 and ZigBee PRO-certified software, it's no wonder that ZigBits are used worldwide by system integrators and OEMs to add standards-based wireless connectivity to products for energy efficiency, building automation, automated meter reading, and more.

IEEE 802.15.4 Software Eases Development

Atmel offers a suite of free and certified IEEE 802.15.4-compliant software stacks, like IEEE 802.15.4 MAC, IPv6/6LoWPAN, ZigBee Radio Frequency for Consumer Electronics (RF4CE), ZigBee® PRO, and ZigBee Smart Energy stacks. These powerful resources help provide a head start with ready to use wireless solutions and the shortest time to market.

IEEE 802.15.4 MAC

The IEEE 802.15.4 standard defines the protocol and compatible interconnection for data communication devices using low data rate, low power and low complexity, short-range radio frequency (RF) transmissions in a wireless personal area network (WPAN). Atmel developed the MAC stack software to support different target platforms (microcontroller and board) and RF transceivers based on a new architecture. This allows easy portability across various Atmel platforms and transceivers, and configurability to improve resource usage.

RF4Control - ZigBee RF4CE

Atmel RF4Control is a full-featured ZigBee RF4CE-compliant platform. The ZigBee RF4CE standard enhances the IEEE 802.15.4 standard by providing a simple networking layer and standard application profiles that let you create a multi-vendor interoperable solution for consumer electronics (CE). The RF4Control software package supports all the Atmel RF Single-chip solutions and Radio Transceivers, and extends standard-compliant 2.4GHz operation by supporting the same functionality and features for the 900MHz frequency band.

Atmel also offer a ready-to-use reference implementation for the ZigBee Remote Control profile which will go on top of the ZigBee RF4CE stack.

BitCloud - ZigBee PRO

BitCloud PRO is Atmel's full-featured, 2nd generation embedded ZigBee PRO certified platform for megaAVR® and ARM®. The stack provides a software development platform for reliable, scalable, and secure wireless applications running on Atmel wireless platforms.

BitCloud Profile Suite

BitCloud Profile Suite is Atmel's ready-to-use framework for rapid development of ZigBee certified products, based on the IEEE 802.15.4 compliant BitCloud ZigBee PRO stack. The suite includes a complete set of fully functional reference implementations of ZigBee Smart Energy (ZSE), ZigBee Building Automation (ZBA) and ZigBee Home Automation (ZHA) device types.


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