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Development platform helps chipKIT and Arduino users develop wireless applications

Tue, 02/26/2013 - 3:23pm

chipKIT uC32 open-source development platformMicrochip Technology Inc. and Digilent announced the jointly developed chipKIT uC32 open-source development platform, which is based on Microchip’s 32-bit PIC32 microcontroller, as well as the chipKIT Wi-Fi Shield. Digilent’s chipKIT uC32 development board has the same form factor as their chipKIT Uno3 board, with the addition of larger memory (512 KB Flash and up to 32 KB RAM).  The uC32 board provides a single, general-purpose development platform for users to create a wide range of 32-bit MCU-based applications using the free, Arduino compatible chipKIT IDE—called the Multi-Platform IDE, or “MPIDE.”  Digilent’s chipKIT Wi-Fi Shield enables users to implement wireless projects with the chipKIT line of microcontroller boards, such as the new uC32, or existing Uno32 and Max32 boards.

Introduced in May 2011, the PIC32 MCU-based chipKIT Platforms have enabled hobbyists and academics to easily and inexpensively add electronics to their projects, even if they don’t have an engineering background.  The chipKIT uC32 board includes Microchip’s PIC32MX340F512H microcontroller, featuring 105 DMIPS performance, 512 KB Flash, 32 KB SRAM and 42 I/O pins that support a number of peripheral functions, such as UART, SPI and I2C ports and pulse-width-modulated outputs.  Twelve of the PIC32’s I/O pins can be used as analog inputs or as digital inputs and outputs.

Digilent’s chipKIT Wi-Fi Shield makes use of Microchip’s agency-certified MRF24WB0MA Wi-Fi module, and provides chipKIT microcontroller boards with the ability to communicate via IEEE 802.11 compatible wireless networks.  The Wi-Fi Shield also provides a microSD™ card connector for use with microSD Flash memory cards.  The chipKIT MPIDE SD library can be used to read/write files stored on the microSD card.
The MPIDE also makes it easy for new developers to introduce their own compatible chipKIT boards.  The MPIDE includes libraries, such as Brian Schmalz’s SoftPWMServo library, which enables users to generate an analogWrite-style output, as well as an RC Servo output, on all pins simultaneously.

Microchip Technology Inc., www.microchip.com
Digilent, Inc., www.digilentinc.com

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