HMIs: Siemens chooses Freescale’s MRAM technology

Maintains soft PLC process data without battery-backup.
By Control Engineering Staff April 1, 2008

Austin, TX– Freescale Semiconductor , a provider of magnetoresistive random access memory (MRAM) products, is providing non-volatile MRAM technology to an industrial touchscreen application developed by Siemens Industry Automation division. Freescale’s 4Mbit MRAM device is integrated into Siemens’ Simatic Multipanel MP 277 and MP 377 human machine interface (HMI) for industrial automation systems.

Siemens reportedly chose the technology because it provides an easy-to-use, non-volatile memory that maintains software-programmable logic controller (soft PLC) process data for its HMI platforms without battery-backup. User-programmable soft PLCs enable implementation of a complete, expandable machine control system in a small form factor that reduces system cost. Multipanels allow integration of several automation tasks on a single platform using soft PLC technology. Freescale’s device was selected for the rugged industrial application platform after extensive qualification testing by Siemens.

“Freescale’s MRAM device provides the non-volatility, performance, and reliability that we need to add user-programmable features to our mid- and high-end display products for the industrial automation market,” said Ingmar Binder, project manager for HMI R&D at Siemens Industry Automation division. Highlights of the Simatic Multipanel HMI series include connectivity options and a non-volatile alarm buffer that requires no additional backup battery in the event of a power loss.

David Bondurant, MRAM product manager at Freescale Semiconductor, added, “Freescale’s MRAM technology provides significant benefits, ranging from non-volatility to fast read/write capabilities, for rugged applications such as Siemens’ industrial automation systems.

To find out more about MRAM technology, visit the Ask Charlie blog response to “What is MRAM?”

MRAM is one technology that seeks to improve on April 2008 issue of Control Engineering .

–edited by Renee Robbins, senior editor, Control Engineering Daily News Desk