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Linux-driven dev board harnesses Sitara PRU-ICSS

Feb 9, 2017 — by Eric Brown 1,465 views

MYIR unveiled a new development board for its TI AM437x based “MYC-C437X” module designed to tap the AM437x’s PRU-ICSS real-time chips.

In late 2015, MYIR launched its MYD-C437X baseboard and MYC-C437x COM based on TI’s single Cortex-A9 core, 1GHz Sitara PRU-ICSS (Programmable Real-Time Unit and Industrial Communication Subsystem) AM437x SoC. Now, the Chinese manufacturer has spun a MYD-C437X-PRU development board that uses the same Linux-driven MYC-C437x COM. It’s designed for developers who want to exploit the capabilities of the AM437x’s quad-core, 200MHz PRU-ICSS real-time, programmable chips. The MYC-C437x module is again supported with a Linux BSP, now upgraded to a Linux 4.1.18 kernel.

MYD-C437X-PRU dev board with MYC-C437x COM (left), and MYC-C437x module alone
(click images to enlarge)

The redesigned MYD-C437X-PRU board replaces one of the MYD-C437X’s two GbE ports with a pair of 10/100Mpbs Ethernet ports that are directly connected to the MCU-based PRU-ICSS subsystems. The sandwich-style combo also switches to a TI SYS/BIOS v6.45 RTOS that runs on the PRU chips in conjunction with Linux.

Dev board details: MYD-C437X-PRU (left) and original MYD-C437X
(click images to enlarge)

The MYD-C437X-PRU replaces the MYD-C437X’s HDMI port with a second LCD interface (1x 16-bit, 1x 24-bit), and it loses the audio interface and one of the two camera interfaces. It also deletes one of the two CAN ports.

In place of four USB 2.0 host ports, you get one. There are now two RS232 ports instead of one, as well as the previous isolated RS485 and serial debug port. As before, there’s a mini-USB 2.0 device port, a microSD slot, a JTAG interface, plus LEDs and buttons.


The other big change aside from the dual Fast Ethernet ports is the addition of a third 20-pin expansion connector. The connector adds more fieldbus protocol interfaces like EnDat and PROFIBUS.

Block diagrams: MYC-C437X module (left) and AM437x SoC
(click images to enlarge)

The 150 x 105mm MYD-C4377-PRU is smaller than the original development board and comes standard with -40 to 85°C support, which was previously offered as an option. The MYC-C437x module provided with the board ships with 512MB RAM instead of a choice of 256MB or 512MB. As before, you also get the same 4GB eMMC flash and reserved NAND and QSPI flash.

AM437x detailed block diagram showing PRU-ICSS functions
(click image to enlarge)

TI’s PRU-ICSS is designed for customizing I/O that requires deterministic, real-time processing and ultra-low-latency. It offers specific support for fieldbus networking protocols such as EtherCAT, PROFINET, EtherNet/IP, and EnDat, among others. A dual-core PRU-ICSS subsystem is included on the Cortex-A8-based TI Sitara AM335x, including the model used on the BeagleBone Black.

Further information

The MYD-C4377-PRU board is available for $189, and the MYC-C437x module sells for $105. More information, including the usual extensive MYIR documentation, may be found on the MYD-C4377-PRU product page.

(advertise here)

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One response to “Linux-driven dev board harnesses Sitara PRU-ICSS”

  1. sergiojx says:

    is the AM4377 a quad-core SoC??

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