A microcontroller is an embedded computer chip that controls most of the electronic appliances and gadgets we use daily. Technology and automation like microcontrollers allow small businesses to operate in ways that were impossible only a few decades ago. Systems like FANUC CNC are constantly being incorporated into the world of automation. Modern microcontrollers are being used in several areas like automotive, communications, lighting, and low-power-driven consumer goods.
The advancements in control techniques started with the first Industrial Revolution. Moreover, the history of automation and manufacturing technology for business started with the invention of microcontrollers and control techniques. With the ever-increasing use of machinery in different industries, mixing the inputs and outputs to meet the users’ needs became necessary for greater control. Initially, relays were used to connect the systems together as part of a physical system. Unfortunately, troubleshooting was time-consuming, and there was no way to expand the processes in a relay.
Technological Innovation In Microcontrollers
The development of new technologies has imposed a transformation of business models. Today, digital transformation is an opportunity and a necessary step for all manufacturing companies that want to improve their business and remain competitive in the market. However, it is important to remember that the concept of business digitization is not limited only to the use of new technologies and document dematerialization.
Microcontrollers were invented in the United States in 1971. They were developed by Intel Corporation to be used in calculators made by a Japanese company named BUSICOM. After their success, they started being sold as general-purpose microcontrollers. The technological innovations in microprocessors ultimately gave rise to PLC or programmable logic controllers. It is a type of computer that helps the operators control the manufacturing processes. Microcontrollers became the main components of the display in gas pump meters.
History Of Microcontrollers
The first commercial microprocessor was the 4-bit Intel 4004, released in 1972. In the next few years, the Intel 8008 and other more capable microprocessors became available in the market. Both these processors required external chips to implement a working system, increasing total system costs and making inexpensive automation of the appliances impossible.
It combined RAM and ROMs on the same chip. This chip would find its way into over a billion PC keyboards and numerous other applications. At the time, Intel president Luke J. Valenter said the microcontroller was one of the most successful in the company’s history, expanding the division’s budget by more than 25 percent.
In 1993, EEPROM memory introduced microcontrollers to be electrically phased out quickly without an expensive EPROM package. This allowed for rapid prototyping and in-system programming. That same year, Atmel introduced the first microcontroller using Flash memory, one special type of EEPROM. Other companies quickly followed suit, with both types of memory.
Application of Microcontrollers in Modern Devices
Nowadays, microcontrollers are heavily used in edge devices and IoT devices. They are also widely used in temperature sensing, light sensing, fire detection, fire control, and mass industrial products. In particular, we find them employed in the car market, mobile telephony, and the telecommunications sector. The most practical way we have to use these devices, without even knowing it, is, for example, through a credit card or buying a musical greeting card.
The main use is aimed at embedded systems, i.e., for all those specific applications (special purpose) relating to digital control. Unlike microprocessors that represent the pure heart of a computer designed for general applications, the microcontroller aims to direct maximum efficiency towards a particular application by optimizing the cost-performance ratio.
In an increasingly interconnected world, where the speed of interaction and data collection from devices is very important, using microcontrollers to implement solutions and projects is essential for their full success. Their invention has allowed considerable progress in technological fields. It has allowed the creation of projects and solutions that were difficult to implement until a few years ago, if not with enormous costs.
Being small but powerful devices with low costs but which simultaneously guarantee many uses, microcontrollers are ideal for any type of solution: from the simple monitoring of the temperature of a room up to the fully automatic manag