New MCU development standard is a game-changer for embedded systems design

MikroElektronika has released SiBRAIN, a standard for add-on development boards that facilitates the simple installation and exchanging of an MCU on a development board furnished with the SiBRAIN socket. It enables embedded designers to try out various MCUs in a prototype system with no need to invest in expensive hardware or learn new tools. The cards are available to support MCUs from major manufacturers, including Microchip, STMicroelectronics, NXP and Texas Instruments, with others to follow soon.

Nebojsa Matic, CEO of MIKROE, commented: “Because there is no universal standardisation, for every different microcontroller, there is a specific set of operating instructions, new tools to learn, new boards and licenses to buy and new processes to adopt. The SiBRAIN card and socket standard is a game-changer, saving months of wasted development time and money and providing enormous design flexibility.”

The device employs the same ‘plug and play’ concept, which underpins the company’s Click board product range. Depending on the MCU type, its pin count, and the number of needed external components, there are different add-on boards. Each board is a self-contained unit, enabling the development system to work on a logic level without having to facilitate the particular necessities of many different MCUs. This provides designers with a free hand in the selection of MCU, regardless of the pin count or pin compatibility. Most importantly, this approach allows designers to swap SiBRAIN MCU cards simply through the development phase with no additional hardware.

Each card is provided with two high-speed 168-pin mezzanine connectors (one male and one female) with the standard SiBRAIN socket pin-out. Cards may be readily installed on any development board with that socket, and the smart design removes the possibility of incorrect orientation and placement. Already, the company offers more than 100 SiBRAIN boards covering popular MCUs such as STM32, PIC32, TIVA, MSP432, Kinetis and many more with new cards added every week.

Author: Yoyokuo