The MSP430 FRAM and the Sharp Memory BoosterPack

A long time ago I wanted to make a watch, and I made some interesting builds. But I always wanted to use one of the Sharp memory displays for a build, and it seems TI has made things simple to test out. They’ve made a Launchpad using a FRAM-memory based MSP430, which uses very little power. And they’ve made a booster pack with a Sharp Memory display, which could be used for many booster packs of course, but they also sell them together. The demos look really cool, and although some of the demo projects needed a little tweak in the config to compile, it was quite simple to get up and running. These displays look so different from LCD that they could be used for some cool projects. The picture below is from one of the demos, and it’s actually running on a supercap that’s attached on the board. It doesn’t run very long, but part of the demo software uses less power and can apparently last a while.

Launchpad dev kitThe touch pad usage in the examples seem a bit … ehhh… touchy. It might be just a firmware issue. It senses touches sometimes without being touched, and the opposite. The touch pads are quite small, so that might be the reason also. In the user guide they excuse themselves by saying there’s no overlay and that the touch would be more accurate wth an overlay. On my own touch pad displays I have played with using silicon as overlays, and acrylic over that, which works quite well. It could be one could make a box for this display and have the touch accessible from the outside. That worked well with my displays. If one made a small breakout board to old the MSP430, the form factor could be quite small. The display user guide gives quite good info about the hardware.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *