Best microcontroller for industrial applications


I have an industrial project requirement to build a device having this functionality:

  • Store Data
  • Send Data to Web Server
  • Device to be placed under scorching sun
  • Sensors – around 5
  • A Graphical Dashboard
  • RFID authentication
  • Buzzer

And maybe a couple more. I am totally getting confused which microcontroller to use:

  • MSP430
  • PIC
  • ARM (Cortex)
  • etc

Or others but I am not sure – I presume that there are other families also for my aid which I don't know. So which microcontroller should I use based upon performance, storage, durability, speed, architecture and robustness?

Best Answer

Which micro-controller should I use based upon performance, storage, durability, speed , architecture and robustness?

To that list add
second sourcing,
remaining lifetime before obsoleted,
cost of entry to development (hardware, compilers,
familiarity with language or hardware,
and any other factors that are of more than trivial relevance to you.

Then decide relative importance of various parameters to you and give each a value from say 1 to 10.

Choose candidate processors that appear to be able to do the job.
For volume production only, you COULD subset at this stage based on costing within the range you can justify for volume purchasing.

Score each candidate roughly according to how they seem to match your criteria.

Order in list of declining score.

Decide if there is any obvious good reason not to discard the bottom half of the list.
Discard bottom half :-).

Look at top few candidates.
If one has a stand out score relative to all challengers, more carefully score the top say 3 again.
If there is still a standout, decide to probably use it, and ask sales rep for each why you should use theirs :-).

If no standout, choose one that you feel happiest with for reasons that seem good to you and use it.

If that is a one off or few off application, and maybe even if a many off,
then if this "Internet of things" device will do what you want, consider using it.

Spark Core - Open source software, open source hardware, open source 'cloud' presence, ARM based, Arduino compatible, WiFi on board. A person conversant with the genal areas involved can have one of these doing useful things via the internet in (well) under an hour.


AND it looks good ...

enter image description here

PS: I have no involvement with Spark Core. I have one sitting on my desk as I type - as yet unused. Any day now.