INTRODUCTION TO - INTRODUCTION TO EMBEDDED SYSTEMS Dr Y...

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INTRODUCTION TO EMBEDDED SYSTEMS Dr. Y. NARASIMHA MURTHY Ph.D Reader, Sri Sai Baba National College (Autonomous) ANANTAPUR – 515 001 ( A.P.)
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What is an Embedded system? An embedded system is one that has computer hardware with software embedded in it as one of its components. Or We can define an embedded system as “A microprocessor based system that does not look like a computer”. Or we can say that it is “A combination of computer hardware and software, and perhaps additional mechanical or other parts, designed to perform a dedicated function. In some cases, embedded systems are part of a larger system or product, as is the case of an antilock braking system in a car ”.
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An embedded system is a special-purpose computer system designed to perform certain dedicated functions. It is usually embedded as part of a complete device including hardware and mechanical parts. (Wikipedia)
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Significance Due to their compact size, low cost and simple design aspects made embedded systems very popular and encroached into human lives and have become indispensable. They are found everywhere from kitchen ware to space craft. To emphasize this idea here are some illustrations.
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Embedded systems everywhere? Embedded systems span all aspects of modern life and there are many examples of their use. a) Biomedical Instrumentation – ECG Recorder, Blood cell recorder, patient monitor system b) Communication systems – pagers, cellular phones, cable TV terminals, fax and transreceivers, video games and so on. c) Peripheral controllers of a computer – Keyboard controller, DRAM controller, DMA controller, Printer controller, LAN controller, disk drive controller.
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d) Industrial Instrumentation – Process controller, DC motor controller, robotic systems, CNC machine controller, close loop engine controller, industrial moisture recorder cum controller. e) Scientific – digital storage system, CRT display controller, spectrum analyser.
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Were the embedded systems existing earlier ? Yes, We have been enjoying the grace of embedded system quite a long time. But they were not so popular because in those days most of the embedded systems were designed around a microprocessor unlike today’s systems which were built around a microcontroller. As we know a microprocessor by itself do not possess any memory, ports etc. So everything must be connected externally by using peripherals like 8255, 8257, 8259 etc. So the embedded system designed using microprocessor was not only complicated in design but also large in size. At the same time the speed of microprocessor is also a limitation for high end applications.
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Why a microcontroller ? A microcontroller is a single silicon chip with memory and all Input/Output peripherals on it. Hence a microcontroller is also popularly known as a single chip computer. Normally, a single microcomputer has the following features : Arithmetic and logic unit Memory for storing program EEPROM for nonvolatile data storage RAM for storing variables and special function registers Input/output ports
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