TQ Develops New Embedded Module Based on NXP

July 26, 2021

Press Release

Photo Courtesy of the Company

Thanks to its crossover CPU, the TQMa117xL offers an optimal basis for the realization of cost-effective and energy-efficient controllers.

Technology service provider TQ, one of the leading embedded specialists, has announced the availability of a new embedded module for mid-August 2021. The TQMa117xL, based on NXP's i.MX RT1170 CPU, scores with a slim size of only 31x31 millimeters and provides all signal pins via a total of 240 LGA pins. The module is equipped with sufficient external memory, an optional security chip and a PMIC connected to the CPU. Thus, TQMa117xL meets even the highest demands. Thanks to the versatility of the processor and the very good power dissipation of less than one watt, this module design promises manifold usability for a wide range of control systems.

With the TQMa117xL, TQ is developing a new LGA module based on NXP's i.MX RT1170 MPU. This new generation of NXP's i.MX RT processor family is also called a crossover CPU, as it bridges the gap between CPU and MPU. Built into the peripherals of the MPU are a powerful Cortex-M7 core with up to 1GHZ CPU frequency, supported by a Cortex-M4 core with up to 400MHZ, as well as many interfaces, e.g. Gigabit Ethernet, CAN FD, USB 2.0, UART and SPI. In addition, the module is equipped with a graphics processor unit (GPU) with 2D support. Reliable, high-performance module operation even at higher temperatures is ensured by an external PMIC (Power Management IC) that is independent of the CPU. 

The TQMa117xxL is equipped with a 16-bit wide LP SDRAM, which allows a memory expansion of up to 64 GB. A Quad-SPI NOR flash memory with a capacity of up to 256 MB is used as fixed memory. Further system components such as an external and thus power-saving real-time clock (RTC), a user EEPROM memory and a temperature sensor round off the module design. Free RTOS - including many application examples - is implemented as the operating system. For applications requiring increased security functions, the SE050 security chip is available as an assembly option. Due to the LGA technology, the module is directly soldered to the mainboard and therefore also suitable for application areas that require a very flat and robust design. The first available samples are scheduled for mid-August 2021.

"As a long-standing partner of NXP, we are very pleased to be able to offer a low-cost module based on this powerful crossover CPU. This new development offers an ideal platform for applications such as small gateways, room controls, decentralized intelligence in automation, time recording systems or even voice-controlled elevator control," explains Konrad Zöpf, responsible product manager at TQ.

Adapted to the numerous application possibilities of the TQMa117xL, TQ also develops a suitable mainboard parallel to the module. In addition to a wide range of interfaces such as two Gigabit Ethernet, two USB 2.0, two CAN FD galvanically isolated and an SD card interface, four digital 24V inputs/outputs are also implemented for controlling external peripheral devices. The mainboard is extended with an analog front end from NXP (NAFE13388B40BS). With it, up to eight programmable analog inputs can be used. Touch displays with a resolution of up to 1280x800 pixels can be connected via a MIPI-DSI or alternatively an LVDS interface. 

In addition, the mainboard, which is only 160 x 100 mm in size, scores with a WiFi and cellular option, scalable from LTE to Nero band, for wireless communication. Three user LEDs and a CSI interface with two lanes for camera connection as well as the option to supply the industrial-grade mainboard via Ethernet make the design perfect. The SBC (Single Board Computer), consisting of a soldered LGA module and mainboard, can already be applied as a fully qualified industrial board due to its many functions. In addition, it can be used as a basis for own designs: starting with smart HMI solutions in building automation via decentralized intelligence for controlling functions and up to real-time recording of sensor data for the automation sector. 

The TQMa117xL embedded module in detail 
•    Display up to WXGA (1280x800) @60 fps
•    Up to 3x CAN
•    Integrated Cortex-M4 processor
•    High-speed communication via 2x Gbit Ethernet (1x TSN / 1xAVB), 2x USB 2.0 interface
•    Low power dissipation (typ. 1 W)
•    Integrated safety functions