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Designer Atmel
Bits 32-bit
Version Rev 2
Design RISC
Encoding Variable
Endianness Big
Extensions Java Virtual Machine

The AVR32 is a 32-bit RISC microprocessor architecture designed by Atmel. The microprocessor architecture was designed by a handful of people educated at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, including lead designer Øyvind Strøm, PhD and CPU architect Erik Renno, M.Sc in Atmel's Norwegian design center.

Most instructions are executed single-cycle. The multiply–accumulate unit is capable of performing a 32-bit * 16-bit + 48-bit arithmetic operation in two cycles (result latency), with an issue rate of one per cycle.

Any resemblance to the 8-bit AVR is only with respect to the design center (both architectures originated out of Atmel Norway, Trondheim) and some of the debug-tools.


The AVR32 architecture consists of several micro-architectures, most notably the AVR32A and AVR32B architectures, which describe fixed additions to the instruction set architecture, configurations of the register file and the use of instruction and data-caches.[1] The AVR32A microarchitecture is targeted at cost-sensitive applications and so does not provide dedicated hardware registers for shadowing of register file registers, status and return address in interrupt contexts. This saves chip area at the expense of slower interrupt handling. The AVR32B, on the other hand, is targeted at applications where interrupt latency is important, so it implements dedicated registers to hold these values for interrupts, exceptions and supervisor calls.[2]

The AVR32 architecture supports a Java virtual machine hardware implementation.

The AVR32 instruction set architecture consists of 16-bit (compact) and 32-bit (extended) instructions, with several specialized instructions not found in architectures like MIPS32 or ARMv5 or ARMv6 ISA. Several U.S. patents are filed for the AVR32 ISA and design platform.

Just like the AVR 8-bit microcontroller architecture, the AVR32 was designed for extremely efficient code density and performance per clock cycle. Atmel used the independent benchmark consortium EEMBC to benchmark the architecture with various compilers and consistently outperformed both ARMv5 16-bit (THUMB) code and ARMv5 32-bit (ARM) code by as much as 50% on code-size and 3X on performance.[citation needed]

Atmel says the "picoPower" AVR32 AT32UC3L consumes less than 0.48 mW/MHz in active mode, which it claims is less power than any other 32-bit CPU.[3]


The AVR32 architecture is solely used in Atmel's own products. Atmel launched in 2006 the first implementation of the AVR32 architecture: the AVR32 AP7 core, a 7-stage pipelined, cache-based design platform.[2] This "AP7000" implementation of the AVR32B architecture supports SIMD (single instruction multiple data) DSP (digital signal processing) instructions to the RISC instruction-set, in addition to Java hardware acceleration. It includes a Memory Management Unit (MMU) and supports operating systems like Linux. In early 2009, the rumored AP7200 follow-on processor was held back, with resources going into other chips.

In 2007, Atmel launched the second implementation of the AVR32 architecture: the AVR32 UC3 core. This is designed for microcontroller usage, using on-chip flash memory for program storage and running without an MMU. The AVR32 UC3 core uses a three-stage pipelined Harvard architecture specially designed to optimize instruction fetches from on-chip flash memory.[4] The AVR32 UC3 core implements the AVR32A architecture. It shares the same instruction set architecture (ISA) as its AP7 sibling, but differs by not including the optional SIMD instructions or Java support. Still, it shares over 220 instructions. The ISA features atomic bit manipulation to control on-chip peripherals and general purpose I/Os and fixed point DSP arithmetic.

Both implementations build on a set of peripheral controllers and bus designs first seen in the AT91SAM ARM-based platforms. Some peripherals first seen in the AP7000, such as the high speed USB peripheral controller, and standalone DMA controller, appeared later in updated ARM9 platforms and then in the ARM Cortex-M3 based products.

Both AVR32 implementations include a Nexus class 2+ based On-Chip Debug framework build with JTAG.

The UC3 C, announced at the Electronica 2010 in Munich Germany on November 10, 2010, is the first 32-bit AVR microcontroller with a floating-point unit.[5]


AP7 Core[edit]

On April 10, 2012 Atmel announced the End of Life of AP7 Core devices on 4/4/2013.[6]

UC3 Core[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "AVR32 Architecture Document". Atmel. Retrieved 2008-06-15. 
  2. ^ a b "AVR32 AP Technical Reference Manual". Atmel. Archived from the original on 3 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-12. 
  3. ^ Atmel press release: "Atmel Introduces AVR32 Microcontroller which Lowers Industry's Best Power Consumption by 63%; picoPower AVR32 AT32UC3L Microcontroller offers less than 0.48 mW/MHz Active and below 100 nA Sleep Mode"
  4. ^ "AVR32UC Technical Reference Manual". Atmel. Retrieved 2008-06-15. 
  5. ^ "Atmel Introduces First 32-bit AVR Microcontroller Featuring Floating Point Unit". Atmel. Retrieved 2011-03-26. 
  6. ^ http://www.atmel.com/About/Quality/obsolescence/obsolete_items.aspx?searchText=ap7

External links[edit]