Renesas Electronics claims first 28nm on-chip flash memory microcontroller

Sample shipments of what is claimed to be the first on-chip flash memory microcontroller using a 28nm process technology. Renesas Electronics explains that the RH850/E2x series MCU will contribute to the realisation of next-generation ‘green’ cars and autonomous vehicles. It incorporates up to six 400MHz CPU cores, which makes it the first on-chip flash memory automotive MCU to achieve the industry’s highest processing performance of 9600 MIPS, claims Renesas. The MCU series also features a built-in flash memory of up to 16-Mbytes as well as enhanced security functions and functional safety.

Under Renesas autonomy, an open, innovative and trusted platform for assisted and automated driving, Renesas provides end-to-end solutions that advance the evolution of vehicles. The 28nm-generation automotive control MCU, together with the R-Car family of SoCs, is designed for cloud connectivity and sensing, that constitute the two main pillars of the Renesas autonomy Platform.

To develop environmentally-friendly vehicles, next-generation fuel-efficient engines require high processing performance to allow the implementation of new fuel combustion systems. Both high processing performance and high integration densities are required to achieve miniaturisation and higher efficiency in the motors and inverters used in electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). The 28nm process flash memory MCU is the first to achieve up to six 400MHz CPU cores and 9600 MIPS processing capabilities, says Renesas Electronics. Compared to the earlier 40nm MCUs, the RH850/E2x series of MCUs also achieves approximately three times the performance at the same power level.

The RH850/E2x increases automotive control system integration by including enhanced sensor interfaces for precise automotive control functions. Multi-core virtual environments and model-based development environments for the MCUs will be available from Renesas partner companies.

Over the air (OTA) functionality automatically and wirelessly updates the engine control unit (ECU) software to control programs with improved safety. The RH850/E2x series is equipped with up to 16-Mbyte of flash ROM. It is possible to only update certain arbitrary areas during program operation. The RH850/E2x series also comes with improved serial interfaces, including up to 10 channels of CAN FD and one Ethernet channel. Security functions that support Evita Medium enable the MCUs to support safe and rapid OTA updating of the software.

Targeting ASIL-D, the highest level of the ISO 26262 functional safety standard for automotive E/E systems, the RH850/E2x series adopts the dual core lock step CPU structure that guarantees that the calculations performed by two CPU cores are identical. The RH850/E2x also provides up to four sets of CPU pairs, and features a variety of hardware functional safety improvements. In applications where a system malfunction could lead to life-endangering accidents, these features immediately detect faults should a malfunction occur and allow system safety to be maintained. Renesas will provide safety analysis tools that can flexibly support a wide range of use cases to implement safe systems.

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