Atmel accelerates automotive design (Part 2)

Yesterday, Bits & Pieces took a closer look at how Atmel is helping accelerate automotive design by closely collaborating with Vector Informatik to fully support our  32-bit AUTOSAR compliant devices.

Essentially, AUTOSAR provides an abstraction layer between hardware and application – allowing hardware-independent development and testing of the application software. It also permits the reuse of a validated application from previous designs for a new one.

“And that is precisely why Atmel has developed a microcontroller (MCU) abstraction layer (MCAL) for its 32-bit AVR automotive family devices,” Atmel engineering rep Eric Tinlot told Bits & Pieces.


“These MCAL modules and Vector’s LIN/CAN communication layers are integrated into Vector’s complete MICROSAR environment (including OS, real-time environment, diagnostic, etc). Using Vector’s DaVinci, Atmel has also developed a complete set of graphical user interfaces (GUI) for each MCAL module to help users configure all features needed in the application.”

According to Tinlot, all MCAL modules have to be configured using their respective GUI screens. The user generates the required configuration files (.h and .c files) with a single click of the ‘generate’ toolbar icon (green triangle) at the top. These configuration files, the MCAL module, and the MICROSAR package can be compiled with any AUTOSAR application onto a 32-bit AVR automotive device to design an AUTOSAR-compliant ECU node.

The following list details the specific MCALs and GUIs developed by Atmel, with the CAN and LIN drivers provided by Vector Informatik.

  • General-purpose timer driver
  • Watchdog driver
  • Microcontroller unit driver
  • Flash drivers
  • EEPROM drivers
  • Serial protocol interface drivers
  • ICU drivers
  • Pulse width modulation (PWM) drivers
  • Analog-digital (A/D) converter drivers
  • Digital input output drivers
  • Port drivers

“Simply put, the complete AUTOSAR solution, available via Vector Informatik, allows designers to develop their own ECU firmware using an Atmel 32-bit automotive device,” Tinlot added. “Networking communication via LIN or CAN buses is also available. Meaning, the included firmware fulfills AUTOSAR spec requirements.”

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