By Jean-Michel Gril-Maffre, STMicroelectronicsdspdesignline.com (August 27, 2008)
Requirements for increasing computing power and more integrated functions are driving a growing number of applications from 16-bit to 32-bit microcontrollers.
This is equally true for battery powered applications, which benefit from the lower voltage supply, as well as the high performance and small die size achieved by 32-bit devices that are based on advanced CMOS process.
However, deep submicron technologies also have a very important drawback: their much higher leakage is a major issue, especially for the limited power resources of a battery powered application.
To enable migration, new 32-bit microcontrollers, including general purpose devices, must provide very efficient ultra low power modes for long term standby.
In this article I will describe how STMicroelectronics engineers enhanced its Cortex-M3 core-based STM32 microcontrollers with low power modes and features that mitigate the impacts of leakage on battery powered applications where static current may be a major contributor to consumption.
Specifically I will address innovations in "ultra low power standby" and Real Time Clock implementation in our STM32 ARM Cortex-M3 core-based microcontrollers.
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