This unit of study aims to provide experience, confidence and competence in the design and implementation of microprocessor-based products and instruments; to impart a detailed knowledge of the software and hardware architecture of a typical modern microcontroller, and an understanding of the use of these resources in product design; and to provide experience of working in a project team to prototype a realistic product to meet a specification. At the end of this unit students will understand microprocessor system organisation, and the organisation of multiple and distributed processor systems, special purpose architectures (DSPs etc. ) and their application. The student will have a detailed knowledge of the software and hardware architecture of a modern microcontroller. This knowledge will include an in-depth understanding of the relationship between assembly language, high-level language, and the hardware, of the utilisation and interfacing of microcontroller hardware resources, and of the design and development of software comprised of multiple interrupt-driven processes. The student will have the competence to develop prototype microprocessor-based products. Course content will include single processor systems, multiple and distributed processing systems, special purpose architectures (DSPs etc) and their application; real-time operating systems for microcontrollers; standard interfacing of sensor and actuation systems; ADC/DAC, SSI, parallel, CAN bus etc. ; specific requirements for microprocessor-based products; problem definition and system design; tools for design, development and testing of prototype systems; the unit of study will include a project, where groups of students design, develop and commission a microprocessor-based product.
Refer to the assessment table in the unit outline.
Completion of a first course in microprocessor systems, including assembly and C language programming, interfacing, introductory digital and analogue electronics.