Renesas has announced that it is significantly expanding its 32-bit RA2 Series microcontrollers (MCUs) with 20 new RA2L1 Group MCUs, increasing the RA Family to 66 MCUs.

The general-purpose RA2L1 MCUs use the Arm Cortex-M23 core operating up to 48 MHz. The RA2L1 MCUs are supported by the Flexible Software Package (FSP) and Renesas’ partner ecosystem, which offers software and hardware building block solutions that work out-of-the-box. The ultra-low power and touch interface of the RA2L1 MCUs make them suitable for home appliance, industrial and building automation, medical and healthcare, and consumer human-machine-interface (HMI) IoT applications.

The RA2L1 MCUs are designed for ultra-low power consumption, with several integrated features to lower BOM costs, including capacitive touch sensing, embedded flash memory densities up to 256 KB, SRAM at 32 KB, analogue, communications, and timing peripherals, and safety and security functions. In many battery-powered applications, the MCU spends most of the time in a low-power standby mode waiting for an internal or external event to wake-up the CPU and process data, make decisions and communicate with other system components.

When benchmarked for power consumption, the RA2L1 MCU was certified with an EEMBC ULPMark score of 304 at 1.8V, verifying its best-in-class power rating. Users can now minimize power consumption close to the standby levels to extend battery life.

“Continuing the rollout of the RA MCU Family, I am pleased to announce the expansion of the general-purpose RA2 Series for HMI IoT applications,” said Roger Wendelken, Senior Vice President of Renesas’ IoT and Infrastructure Business Unit. “The RA2L1 MCUs were designed from the ground-up to optimise for lowest-standby power, employing an advanced power and clock gating feature, and integrate our second-generation capacitive touch sensing unit with advanced and highly differentiated features.”

The advanced capacitive touch IP in the RA2L1 MCUs provides enhanced operability for a variety of touch and touchless system implementations. For example, it supports sensing through acrylic or glass panels more than 10 mm thick, which is enough for use in household equipment with thick doors or partitions. It also implements proximity sensing (hovering) and 3D gestures.