05 Jan '15, 5pm

Hardware and Firmware Issues in Using Ultra-Low Power MCUs

Background -- Do read this. It gives a bit of information about coin cells, and then shows how the basic assumptions made by MCU vendors are completely off-base. They talk about how long a system can sleep; we care about how much work can be done when it is awake. Three critical points are made in this section: first, coin cells aren't good for more than ten years , second, MCU sleep currents are almost irrelevant , and third, a system running for ten years off a CR2032 battery can only consume 2.5 uA on average . On Typical Specifications -- Many MCU vendors make glorious claims about low current consumption and quote astonishing numbers. Dig into the datasheets and it's not uncommon to find these as "typical" specifications. I investigated what "typical" means. The result: never, ever, use a "typical" specification as design guidance . CR2032 Behavior -- How does a coin ...

Full article: http://www.ganssle.com/reports/ultra-low-power-design.html

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