Renesas Electronics accelerates industrial ethernet application development with new RZ/N1 solution kit

Renesas Electronics, a supplier of advanced semiconductor solutions, announced the availability of the new RZ/N1 microprocessor (MPU) Solution Kit designed to support various industrial network applications including programmable logic controllers (PLCs), intelligent network switches, gateways, operator terminals and remote I/O solutions.

The new RZ/N1 Solution Kit is a complete development package that includes the hardware and software to enable faster prototyping of industrial Ethernet protocols such as EtherCAT, EtherNet/IP™, ETHERNET Powerlink, PROFINET, Sercos, and CANopen, thereby accelerating development and saving up to six months of industrial network protocol integration into customers’ applications.

The new kit includes a CPU development board based on the RZ/N1S MPU. In addition, a comprehensive software package is included with all the drivers and middleware, sample protocol stacks, U-Boot and Linux-based BSP, a unique inter-processor communication software, and even a user-friendly PinMuxing tool that can generate C-code header files that removes the complexity of pin configuration. The various software and sample code provides customers with a complete set of tools and frameworks to build their own application without any additional up-front costs or complexity.

Key features of the new RZ/N1 solution kit:

  • Enhanced operating system flexibility

Developers can now evaluate using the operating system (OS) ThreadX® for the applications subsystem, in addition to Linux that is already supported by the RZ/N1. This enables system developers to choose an OS depending on their specific application requirements. Both OS options support the leading industrial Ethernet protocols that have been implemented on RZ/N1.

Linux: A widely used OS with a very large knowledge base community. For Yocto based Linux development, Renesas provides the respective Yocto recipes to build the Linux, U-Boot and root file system. Using Qt abstracted set of APIs, GUI applications can also be developed and ported to different targets.

ThreadX: Renesas provides a sample reference port of Express Logic’s X-Ware IoT platform powered by ThreadX on the application subsystem. ThreadX is designed specifically for deeply embedded, real-time, and IoT applications. It provides advanced scheduling, communication, synchronisation, timer, memory management, and interrupt management facilities.

  • Enables PLC programming compatible with IEC 61131-3 by CODESYS

The new solution kit allows evaluation of CODESYS, a hardware independent IEC 61131-3 development system for programming and creating programmable logic controller (PLC) applications. Among others it supports Industrial Ethernet master stacks for EtherCAT, EtherNet/IP, Sercos, CANOpen and PROFINET.

Furthermore, the embedded LCD controller featured in the RZ/N1D makes great use of the CODESYS target visualisation tool, enabling product development with graphical visualisation screens. Having CODESYS support enables the device to be either a protocol slave device but also as a master, which highlights the flexibility of the RZ/N1 Group MPUs.

Availability

The enhanced RZ/N1 Solution Kit for the RZ/N1D and RZ/N1S Groups of MPUs are available now through Renesas Electronics and representative distributor partners. The solution kit for the RZ/N1L is scheduled to be available in 1H 2018. The kit includes a variety of sample applications, development tools, drivers as well as evaluation versions of the protocol stacks for faster prototyping and integration.

Renesas will demonstrate the new kit at SPS IPC Drives 2017 (stand 130 in Hall 10.1), to be held November 28-30, 2017 in Nuremberg, Germany.

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