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ST samples configurable mixed-signal chip

Geneva—STMicroelectronics unveiled what it is touting as the industry's first IC with a complete set of configurable and customizable analog functions for printer, fax, and point-of-sale system applications.

The device, called the Structured Architecture of Bridges and Regulators (SABRe), combines low development costs and short time-to-market with maximum flexibility.

The SABRe product complements ST's SPEAr (Structured Processor Enhanced Architecture) family of customizable digital engines for printers, scanners and other embedded-control applications, extending the concept of easy configurability and customizability to the analog domain. Together, SPEAr and the S.A.B.Re make up the first complete customizable printer platform in the market.

ST's SABRe device integrates a large number of features that can be configured and customized, including motor drivers, regulators, an analog-to-digital converter, operational amplifiers and voltage comparators.

Certain architectural changes can be programmed via the serial interface and/or general purpose I/Os, while more complex functions can be customized with metal layers implementing specific macro functions. The metal customization does not modify any active part of the silicon, minimizing the risk of undesired parasitic effects.

The SABRe IC has been primarily developed for motion and power-supply parts in printer applications. ST's device functions as the “master” and manages the whole power section of the application with specific programmable PowerUp routines before the digital IC switches on.

The main components of ST's SABRe IC are four configurable bridges that can also function as switching regulators or power charge; a variable-voltage buck switching regulator; a switching regulator controller; a linear regulator; a multi-channel configurable 9-bit A/D converter; two operational amplifiers; a bi-directional serial interface and several general-purpose I/Os.

Pricing: In the range of $2.20 to $2.50 in quantities of several thousand units.
Availability: Samples are available now; volume production planned for the fourth quarter of 2007.
Datasheet: click here

STMicroelectronics, 1-781-861 2650, www.st.com

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