New Extreme-low-power Precision Real-Time-Clock Module for Green IoT Applications

EM Microelectronic, the ultra-low-power semiconductor division of the Swatch Group, has released an extremely low power Real-Time Clock (RTC) module, setting a new industry benchmark for accuracy and power consumption.

The EM3028 leads the way for green IoT applications, with 50% extended battery life compared to its closest competitor, with double the accuracy. It extends the device life span at a reduced overall BOM cost.

Green Internet of Things (Green IoT) basically focuses on the energy efficiency in the IoT principles. It is defined as the energy efficient way to either reduce the greenhouse effect caused by existing IoT applications or to eradicate the same in IoT itself.

The EM RTCs provides an elegant solution for increasing the autonomy of connected devices, by providing accurate sleep and wake-up timing for their power-hungry elements, thus enhancing the global user experience. The frustrating need to frequently charge or replace the batteries of a wearable device becomes a thing of the past with the EM3028 used as an ideal companion for EM’s energy harvesting solutions, this unique combination requiring, in certain applications, no charging or battery replacement throughout the complete device life span.

The high accuracy and long-term stability of this RTC guarantee consistent performance throughout the device lifetime without the need to calibrate during manufacturing. Its 1-ppm accuracy guarantees a staggering 30 seconds precision over one year, twice as good as the best-in-class RTC previously on the market, while consuming the energy equivalent of 4 water drops per day. The device features an integrated backup switch and, thanks to the extreme low power operation, allows waking up a sleeping device even years after it has been switched off for power saving purposes, all at extremely low BOM cost.

According to Michel Willemin, CEO of EM Microelectronic, the company set a new world record, with 40nA current consumption for 1-ppm accuracy, making the EM3028 the perfect embodiment of their watch making DNA: Swiss precision timing combined with ultra-low-power microelectronics This development is a major stepping stone for the company’s vision of a green IoT with a seamless user experience, based on zero-maintenance devices.

Other key features of EM3028 include a 32-bit UNIX timer, operating voltage range as low as 1.2V, as well as a plug-and-play, factory pre-calibrated non-volatile configuration setting guaranteeing the configuration and user parameters are never lost, even in case of system power fail. The extremely small device size makes it ideal for integration in tiny wearable applications.

The EM3028 is available as a standalone IC or in customized, application-specific modules, in combination with other parts from the EM portfolio, such as Energy Harvesting controllers, EM9304 BLE chip and a wide variety of sensor solutions.

Click here to know more about the EM3028 circuit.