Microchip's New Arm®-Based PIC® Microcontrollers Enable Easy Integration of Bluetooth® Low Energy Connectivity

By Tiera Oliver

Associate Editor

Embedded Computing Design

October 19, 2022


Microchip's New Arm®-Based PIC® Microcontrollers Enable Easy Integration of Bluetooth® Low Energy Connectivity

CHANDLER, Ariz.,— Microchip Technology is introducing its first Arm Cortex®-M4F-based PIC microcontroller (MCU) family designed to combat wireless connectivity design challenges with the integration of Bluetooth Low Energy functionality, which can be directly integrated into a systems’ components. 

“Our PIC32CX-BZ2 MCU family removes barriers that have made it difficult to bring wireless applications to market, from availability problems and complexity challenges to regulatory certification hurdles and long-term support concerns,” said Steve Caldwell, vice president of Microchip’s wireless solutions business unit. “Our family tightly integrates wireless connectivity with an MCU that is built on our decades of specialized experience and backed by a vertical manufacturing approach that encompasses ICs, Microchip’s highly integrated software stacks, in-house module manufacturing and a customer-driven obsolescence practice.” 

The PIC32CX-BZ2 family is comprised of System-on-Chip (SoC) devices and RF-ready modules, in addition to Zigbee® stacks and Over the Air (OTA) update capabilities, and hardware features such as a 12-bit analog to digital converter (ADC), multiple timer/counters for control (TCC) channels, an on-board encryption engine, various interfaces, CAN, sensor, display, and other peripherals.

The 1 MB of Flash memory provided by the PIC32CX-BZ2 family supports large application codes, multiprotocol wireless stacks, and OTA updates. The family is AEC-Q100 Grade 1 (125 °C) qualified and the packages are designed to simplify wireless connectivity integration for robust solutions.

Microchip’s MPLAB® Harmony 32-bit embedded software development framework provides painless development using the PIC32CX-BZ2 MCU family, and the MPLAB Code Configurator integration enables ideal prototyping with drag-and-drop auto code generation, as well as application code examples provided on GitHub and linked through the MPLAB Code Configurator and MPLAB Discover.

PIC32CX-BZ2 SoCs enable RF design with chip-down reference design packages and wireless design check services. Microchip’s WBZ451 modules are pre-certified to various regulations and feature an optimized on-board RF design, enabling easy use for users with very little RF knowledge.

The MPLAB Harmony v3 framework includes other additional tools and various debuggers, programmers, virtual sniffer, and compilers. GitHub demo applications and documentation, wireless design check services, and building blocks provide step-by-step instructions throughout the application development process to provide even more support. The PIC32CX-BZ2 family is supported by the PIC32CX-BZ2 and WBZ451 Curiosity Development Board (Part number: EV96B94A).

The PIC32CX-ZB2 family is in-stock and available now.

PIC32CX1012BZ25048-I and PIC32CX1012BZ25048-E SoCs ship in 7 x 7 mm 48 Quad-Flat No-leads (QFN) packages. The WBZ451PE-I and the WBZ451UE-I modules come with an on-board Printed Circuit Board (PCB) antenna and a U.FL connector for external antenna respectively.

For more information, visit: https://www.microchip.com/

Tiera Oliver, Associate Editor for Embedded Computing Design, is responsible for web content edits, product news, and constructing stories. She also assists with newsletter updates as well as contributing and editing content for ECD podcasts and the ECD YouTube channel. Before working at ECD, Tiera graduated from Northern Arizona University where she received her B.S. in journalism and political science and worked as a news reporter for the university’s student led newspaper, The Lumberjack.

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