STMicro Showcasing IoT Tech in Tokyo
STMicroelectronics is exhibiting its latest solutions for the Internet of Things (IoT) at Techno Frontier 2015. Demonstrations at ST's booth (No. 5E-301) focus on technologies that contribute to building a society where everything is connected through the Internet, such as Smart Cities, Smart Power, and wearable devices.
Smart City Solutions: A number of Smart City projects are now underway worldwide aimed at reducing environmental loads through greater energy efficiency, improving operation and maintenance of buildings and public infrastructure, and enhancing various types of public services. At Techno Frontier, ST and Paradox Engineering, a Swiss technology company, are demonstrating a Smart City solution based on STâ€™s development boards for 32-bit MCUs and various sensors combined with Paradox Engineering's wireless lighting-control boards and its communication platform for the efficient operation of wireless mesh networks.
A wireless mesh network installed at STâ€™s booth at Techno Frontier allows the detection by proximity-sensor nodes of a radio-controlled model car to adjust road lighting in response to the position of the vehicle; in-door vibration detection by acceleration-sensor nodes combined with temperature, humidity, and pressure measurements at multiple environmental sensor nodes installed around the booth; monitoring power consumption of booth lights using wirelessly-connected lighting-control boards. All the sensor data is displayed on a screen.
Smart Power Solutions: A large variety of smartphones, tablets, and wearable devices in production increases the diversity in power adapters and the demand for simple, user-friendly, and energy-efficient power-supply solutions. In wireless power supplies, ST shows its advanced multi-platform digital power-controller IC that is compliant with the Qi and PMA (Power Matters Alliance) standards. ST will also introduce a USB PD (Power Delivery) controller IC that conducts protocol communication between a host and terminals for USB Power Delivery that supplies up to 100W via USB to electronic devices with high power consumption.
Regulations on standby power are being tightened across the world in order to reduce the waste power produced by ac adapters when electronic devices are not in operation. At Techno Frontier, ST is demonstrating its standby-power monitoring solution using a multi-mode power-controller IC suitable for ac-adapter chargers for smartphones and tablet PCs. This power-controller IC, which reduces standby power to almost zero, integrates a new proprietary primary constant-current mode sensing and high-voltage startup circuit in a 8-pin package, thereby contributing to cost reduction by minimizing the number of external components.
Silicon carbide (SiC) attracts attention as a next-generation semiconductor material. On display at Techno Frontier, STâ€™s newest SiC Power MOSFET offers superior power efficiency and reliability, expanding the Companyâ€™s portfolio of devices with different on-resistance ratings. Thanks to ST's proprietary packaging technology, the new 1200V SiC Power MOSFET can be operated at temperatures up to 200 degrees C, which makes it ideal for applications used in high-temperature environments, such as solar-power inverters, electric and hybrid automobiles, server systems, and industrial motors.
Wearable Solutions: Wearable devices have the potential to create â€œhuman nodesâ€ that form part of the IoT. Addressing safe energy supply in wearable devices and sensor nodes that are increasingly becoming part of our everyday life, ST has developed an ultra-thin (220Î¼m) battery that uses a solid-state thin lithium layer on a glass substrate made through a semiconductor manufacturing process. As a solid battery, it is free from risks of ignition or explosion.
ST is exhibiting the worldâ€™s smallest LDO regulator with linear voltage control. ST's advanced process and packaging technologies have enabled the reduction in IC dimensions to 0.47 Ã— 0.47mm -- about three times the thickness of a human hair. ST is also demonstrating its ultra-small battery-charging IC that combines highly accurate current control with an extremely low leak current. These ST products will significantly improve design flexibility for developers of wearable devices.
ST is showing its 6-axis MEMS sensor-module evaluation board that integrates a 3-axis digital-output acceleration sensor and a 3-axis gyroscope. The moduleâ€™s compact form factor (2.5 Ã— 3.0 Ã— 0.8 mm) and superior power efficiency (about 20% higher than competing products) contribute to space and power savings in wearable devices. The ST booth at Techno Frontier is also hosting a voice-recognition demo based on MEMS microphone and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technologies.
Development Ecosystem: In an IoT environment, every "thing" needs to provide computation, sensing, communication, and power-supply capabilities. Device manufacturers want to make the development of such "things" quick and easy. Visitors to ST's booth at Techno Frontier 2015 can experiment with the 32-bit MCU development and expansion boards equipped with various motion and environmental sensors and wireless communication technologies (BLE/NFC) that are part of the Companyâ€™s continuously expanding IoT development ecosystem.
Other demonstrations at ST's Techno Frontier booth include a digital power-supply solution that makes switching power supplies more efficient; highly accurate motor control that combines a microcontroller with a motor driver; and noise cancellation using MEMS microphones.