The A-Star 32U4 Prime SV is a programmable board based on the ATmega32U4 AVR microcontroller and arranged in the common Arduino form factor. The A-Star Prime offers many additional features and improvements over competing products, including superior power management that enables efficient operation from 5 V to 36 V. This configuration of the A-Star 32U4 Prime SV has no microSD support and includes preinstalled female headers common to many Arduinos.
The Pololu A-Star 32U4 Prime is a general-purpose programmable board based on the ATmega32U4 AVR microcontroller from Microchip (formerly Atmel) and arranged in the common Arduino form factor exemplified by the Uno R3 and Leonardo. As such, the A-Star Prime is compatible with many Arduino shields. All 26 of the microcontroller’s GPIO lines are accessible on the board, including seven than can be used as PWM outputs and twelve that can be used as analog inputs. The ATmega32U4 is capable of native full-speed USB, which makes it more versatile than similar boards that rely on USB-to-serial adapters: in addition to supporting a virtual (CDC) serial/COM port interface, the A-Star can appear to a connected computer as a mouse and keyboard. The A-Star’s USB interface can be accessed through its USB Micro-B connector.
The A-Star 32U4 Prime ships with a preloaded Arduino-compatible bootloader (which uses 4 KB of flash memory, leaving 28 KB available for the user program). Pololu provides a software add-on that enables the board to be easily programmed from the Arduino environment and an Arduino library to make it easy to use the additional on-board hardware. The A-Star 32U4 has the same microcontroller and form factor as the Arduino Leonardo, and it runs at the same frequency, so we generally expect it to work with shields that are compatible with the Leonardo and similar boards. Note that the Prime has additional components and connection points, so you should make sure these do not physically interfere with any shield you are considering using.
A-Star 32U4 Prime SV 5 V regulator
A major feature of the A* Prime SV is its power system, which allows it to efficiently operate from a 5 V to 36 V external source. The input voltage is regulated to 5 V by an ISL85410 switching step-down (buck) converter from Intersil.
The SV’s 5 V switching regulator has an efficiency – defined as (Power out)/(Power in) – of 80% to 95% for most combinations of input voltage and load.
The A-Star’s components, including the microcontroller and LEDs, draw 30 mA to 40 mA in typical applications. The rest of the regulator’s achievable output current, which depends on input voltage as well as ambient conditions, can be used to power other devices. The currents shown in the Output Currents graph above are close to the limits of the regulator’s capability and generally cannot be sustained for long periods; under typical operating conditions, a safe limit for the maximum continuous regulator output current is approximately 1 A.
The dropout voltage of a step-down regulator is defined as the minimum amount by which the input voltage must exceed the regulator’s target output voltage in order to assure the target output can be achieved. As can be seen in the Dropout Voltage graph above, the dropout voltage of the Prime SV’s regulator increases approximately linearly with the output current. For light loads where the dropout voltage is small, the board can operate down to 5 V. However, for larger loads, the dropout voltage should be taken into consideration when selecting a power supply; operating above 6 V will ensure the full output current is available.
|Manufacturer Part Number||3113|
|Processor||ATmega32U4 @ 16 MHz|
|Clock||16 MHz Crystal|
|User I/O lines||26|
|Ground Access Points||43|
|Recommended Input Voltage||5 - 36VDC
Note: Batteries can have much higher voltages than their nominal voltages when fully charged, so be careful with nominal voltages above 24 V. A 36 V battery is not appropriate for this product.
|RAM Size||2560 bytes|
|Program Memory Size||32 KB
Note: 4 KB of the MCU's 32 KB of flash memory is used by the pre-installed USB bootloader. All 32 KB is available when programming via the ISP header rather than the bootloader.
|Barrel Jack Size||2.1mm x 5.5mm|