onsemi has launched a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) system on chip with low power for tags and other industrial applications.
The RSL15 support BLE5.2 with an ARM Cortex M33 processor, compared to the M3 core in the previous RSL10. There are two versions, one as a standalone transceiver and one with more memory (512Kbytes of flash) for running applications, with a focus on low power operation.
“The M33 has the best combination of the performance for security and we focus not only on the tx and rx but the activity modes,” said Jakob Nielsen, Director, Bluetooth Low Energy Connectivity at onsemi, with a deep sleep mode current of 36nA. But he points to a CoreMark benchmark for performance of 60.5 and a
“We also have a proprietary sensor mode that captures data with rudimentary threshold analysis so it runs without having to activate the full core. The design is power gated so blocks are not powered until needed. There is 80kBytes of RAM memory with 16Kbytes for BLE, and 64Kbytes as 8 banks of 8Kbytes for application level code that can be switched on in milliseconds. We provide firmware macros to enable the RAM.”
All of this prevents the chip being a commodity part.
“We didn’t consider it commodity, we see it as a highly differentiated product with longer battery life and data security,” said Nielsen. “We have added in a platform that allows you to add security to both applications and data, so we have added various ways to capture data in an energy efficient way and process it and interfaces for industrial automation.”
The RSL15 supports a number of new capabilities provided by the Bluetooth 5.2 specification, including longer range, higher data transmissions and localization through angle of arrival (AoA) and angle of departure (AoD).
Onsemi is also working with AI partner SensiML on TinyML for simple AI at the edge, and working on porting the FreeRTOS real time operating system from RSL10 to the RSL15.
There will also be an automotive version next year for vehicle access, using a smartphone as a key, and for tyre pressure monitoring, with a Q100 version in a WQFN wettable flank package.
There are production samples in a 40oin QFN package and Neilsen says onsemi is ready to take volume orders
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