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Projects

Projects

This page shows projects that have been built for customers as well as internal projects. They may include software products described on the software page.

SD/MMC Card Bootloaders

A number of bootloader products have been developed to enable the firmware of various members of Microchip's PIC18F and PIC24F family of Microcontrollers to be upgraded via an SD/MMC card. This capability enables firmware to be upgraded in the field simply by inserting the SD/MMC card with the new software image and resetting the PIC. Details can be found on the Software page.

Ethernet Bootloaders

A number of bootloader products have been developed to enable the firmware of various members of Microchip's PIC18F family of controllers to be upgraded over an Ethernet Interface. Currently two different types of Ethernet controllers are supported, the RealTek RTL8019AS and the Microchip ENC28J60 Ethernet controller. Details of the platforms and processors supported can be found on the Software page.

Ethernet Reference Designs for Microchip PIC18F series microcontrollers

BE Reference Design

A number reference designs have been developed for Ethernet Development Boards based on Microchip microcontrollers. The reference designs includes common components typically found in embedded designs such as serial interfaces, SD card interfaces, EEPROM/FRAM, Status LEDs etc. Current reference designs include:

  • PIC18F2620 Microcontroller with ENC28J60 Ethernet controller
  • PIC18F4620 Microcontroller with ENC28J60 Ethernet controller
  • EtherPIC PIC18F97J60 Microcontroller with embedded Ethernet
Ethernet Bootloader images and test applications for exercising the boards for the PIC18F2620 and PIC18F4620 platforms can be found on the software page.

A test application for the EtherPIC platform can be found here.

SD/MMC Card File System, Drivers and Utilities

Need to add low cost storage to a PIC? The SD/MMC cards is a low cost option for adding high capacity storage to a PIC Microcontroller with minimal I/O requirements. Currently two drivers are available, the first is a low level SD/MMC Card driver supporting reading and writing SD/MMC cards and utilities to examine the data structures on the cards. The second driver is a SD/MMC Card File System with a sample DOS like command line interface.

A reference hardware design for a data logger utilizing SD/MMC for storage and implemented with an PIC24FJGA002 microcontroller can be found here. For additional reference hardware designs integrating SD/MMC cards, refer to the section Ethernet Reference Designs on this page.

Further information on the SD/MMC Card Drivers can be found on our Software page.

Bitscope LAN Interface Adapter

Acoustic Anemometer

A LAN interface subsystem was developed for one of our clients, Metachip Pty Ltd, a leading vendor of cost effective mixed signal test instrumentation. The integration of Brush Electronic's Ethernet technology into their products, has increased the flexibility and versatility of their instrumentation and their appeal to their target market. The incorporation of an Ethernet interface has increased the capabilities and performance for their system as a whole, enabling them to increased their addressable market. The product family in question is marketed as the Bitscope and can be found at www.bitscope.com

Watchdog Supervisory Systems

A number of supervisory systems have been developed to enable the automatic restart of a remote computer based data acquisition systems in the event of a system crash. The original systems were black box closed designs with no access to the source code of these legacy systems. The Supervisory Systems were developed to work in parallel with the legacy applications on the target systems and monitor for abnormal system behaviour. These Supervisory Systems typically comprise of three main components:

  • PC Supervisory Software application (PCS) running on the computer to monitor the background behaviour of the application
  • Communications Processor Supervisor (CPS) responsible for monitoring the activity of the PCS application
  • CDMA modem for sending SMS alerts and enabling remote interrogation and configuration of the system.
Each of the Supervisory System subsystems is capable of initiating an application restart, operating system restart, sensor subsystem restart or full power cycling of the system in event of a significant anomonally being detected. The systems have proven very successful in the field resulting in significant increases of the quantity and quality data captured by the associated data acquisition systems.