Atmel Patent Grants

Sensor and method of sensing

Granted: March 21, 2017
Patent Number: 9600124
A sensor is arranged to determine the presence of an object from a change in a capacitance of a sensing element. The sensor includes a capacitance measurement circuit operable to perform measurement cycles to measure a capacitance of the sensing element, and a controller circuit. The control circuit is operable to detect a periodic noise signal induced on the sensing element, to determine a first part, of a repeating pattern of the periodic noise signal, which causes a change in an…

Memory device and systems and methods for selecting memory cells in the memory device

Granted: March 14, 2017
Patent Number: 9595335
A memory device comprises memory cells arranged in rows and columns, and source lines associated with memory sections, each of which includes a plurality of memory cells. Source terminals of transistors included in the memory cells in a first memory section are physically coupled to a first source line that is distinct from other source lines associated with other memory sections on a same row of the memory device as the first memory section. Gate terminals of transistors included in…

Adaptive acknowledgment transmissions

Granted: February 28, 2017
Patent Number: 9584634
Systems and techniques for adaptive automatic acknowledgment handling are described. A described system includes a memory structure to store a data rate (DR) adaptation mode indicator, a frame check sequence (FCS) adaptation mode indicator, a preset DR parameter, and a preset FCS parameter; an extractor to extract a DR parameter from a received frame to produce an extracted DR parameter and extract a FCS parameter from the received frame to produce an extracted FCS parameter; a selector…

Average current control for a switched power converter

Granted: February 21, 2017
Patent Number: 9577521
A circuit for controlling a switch in a power converter in which peak current is regulated to achieve a specified average current through a load. Control logic is operable to monitor a voltage across a sensing resistor such that when the voltage across the sensing resistor reaches or exceeds a threshold value, the control logic generates a signal that causes a switch to be turned OFF.

Multi-state capacitive button

Granted: February 14, 2017
Patent Number: 9568524
In one embodiment, an apparatus includes a sensor, a button, a conductor between the button and the sensor, and a controller connected to the sensor. The sensor includes first and second electrode tracks. The button includes an electrically isolating material and is configured to capacitively couple with an object. The conductor is configured to capacitively couple with the sensor and form a galvanic connection between the first and second electrode tracks when the conductor comes into…

Low-power and low-frequency data transmission for stylus

Granted: February 14, 2017
Patent Number: 9569016
In one embodiment, a method includes initiating an acquisition of a first signal from an electrode of a touch sensor according to an acquisition frequency of the touch sensor. The method also includes reversing, with a controller, a polarity of the first signal to produce a second signal. The method also includes storing a first modulated signal at an end of the acquisition of the first signal, where the first modulated signal includes the second signal as modulated by one or more…

Capacitive sensing with low-frequency noise reduction

Granted: February 14, 2017
Patent Number: 9569037
A method of sensing the presence of a body from a change in an amount of charge present on a capacitively charged key. The method comprises inducing charge onto the key during a drive part of a measurement cycle, coupling a signal measurement capacitor to the key during a signal measurement part of the measurement cycle to the effect that the charge induced on the key during the drive part of the measurement cycle is transferred to the signal measurement capacitor, determining from a…

Active valley fill power factor correction

Granted: February 14, 2017
Patent Number: 9572206
A power converter is disclosed that includes an active valley fill (AVF) capacitor that is actively switched to provide current to a load during a portion of an alternating current (AC) input cycle. The current supplied to the load includes some current supplied by the AC input and some current supplied by the AVF capacitor. Circuitry is configured to regulate the amount of current flowing through the load, including controlling the amount of current supplied by the AVF capacitor. The…

Active stylus with passive mutual measurements

Granted: February 7, 2017
Patent Number: 9563304
An apparatus includes a sense unit operable to sense a plurality of first signals transmitted on one or more vertical lines and one or more horizontal lines of a touch sensor, the one or more vertical lines and the one or more horizontal lines operable to drive the plurality of first signals. The apparatus also includes a drive unit operable to transmit, in response to the sense unit sensing at least one of the plurality of first signals, a second signal to the one or more vertical lines…

Capacitive control panel

Granted: February 7, 2017
Patent Number: 9563317
A control panel for proximity and force sensing, includes a cover layer, a first electrode layer including a first force sensor electrode, a second force sensor electrode positioned in a second electrode layer or on a support layer, and a dielectric substrate at least a portion of which is compressible and is positioned between the first and second force sensor electrodes. The support layer is positioned to support at the vicinity of the second force sensor electrode support location so…

Edgeless single-layer touch sensor

Granted: January 31, 2017
Patent Number: 9557361
A touch sensor includes a substrate and a plurality of columns of electrodes disposed on a first side of the substrate. The substrate includes a first end and a second end opposite the first end. The columns each include a sense electrode and drive electrodes. The columns include a first column adjacent to the first end, a second column adjacent to the second end, and one or more interior columns. The touch sensor also includes a plurality of channels for routing tracks coupled to the…

Dynamic adjustment of received signal threshold in an active stylus

Granted: January 31, 2017
Patent Number: 9557833
In one embodiment, a method includes receiving a signal at a stylus. The stylus is operable to wirelessly transmit signals to and receive signals from a device. The stylus includes a plurality of electrodes disposed in a tip of the stylus. The method includes determining a characteristic of the signal, and based at least in part on the characteristics of the signal, a threshold for determining whether to process signals received wirelessly from the device is dynamically adjusted.

Configurable clear channel assessment

Granted: January 31, 2017
Patent Number: 9560673
An example method of assessing one more communication channels includes receiving an indication to initiate channel assessment, receiving a user-selected first set of assessment parameters, and determining whether or not the first communication channel is busy based on the first set of assessment parameters. The method also includes replacing the first set of assessment parameters with a user-selected second set of assessment parameters, and determining whether or not the second…

Touchscreen electrode configuration

Granted: January 24, 2017
Patent Number: 9551904
A touchscreen includes touchscreen electrode elements distributed across an active area of a substrate, and the touchscreen overlays a display. The touchscreen electrode elements are configured to avoid creating moiré patterns between the display and the touchscreen, such as angled, wavy, zig-zag, or randomized lines. In a further example, the electrodes form a mesh pattern configured to avoid moiré patterns.

Centralized peripheral access protection

Granted: January 24, 2017
Patent Number: 9552385
Implementations are disclosed for a centralized peripheral access controller (PAC) that is configured to protect one or more peripheral components in a system. In some implementations, the PAC stores data that can be set or cleared by software. The data corresponds to an output signal of the PAC that is routed to a corresponding peripheral component. When the data indicates that the peripheral is “unlocked” the PAC will allow write transfers to registers in the peripheral component.…

Changing the detection range of a touch sensor

Granted: January 10, 2017
Patent Number: 9542046
In one embodiment, a method for changing the detection range of a touch sensor includes receiving a signal associated with an operation of a device having a touch sensor, and in response to the signal, determining that a detection mode of the touch sensor associated with the device is to be changed. In response to the determination, decreasing sensitivity of a portion, but not all, of the touch sensor.

Permitting coexistence of data transfer of interferring wireless signals

Granted: January 10, 2017
Patent Number: 9544813
A system and method of permitting coexistence of WiFi and Bluetooth® data transfer on a single chip in UE including a transceiver includes using CTS data packets to protect Bluetooth® signals for SCO communication links; using only WiFi circuitry in the chip to determine when Bluetooth® data transfer is required by the UE; establishing a specified period of the Bluetooth® data transfer; and starting WiFi medium contention only upon an end of the specified period of the Bluetooth®…

Common mode noise suppression during hovering and proximity detection

Granted: January 3, 2017
Patent Number: 9535545
In one embodiment, a touch sensor includes a touch screen having a plurality of electrodes and a controller. The controller is operable to detect that an object is in proximity to the touch screen by measuring capacitance values from a reference area of the touch screen, determining a reference capacitance value using the measured capacitance values from the reference area, measuring capacitance values from a main area of the touch screen, and suppressing noise from the measured…

Capacitive sensing

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: 9531380
A multi-channel capacitive sensor comprises a sample capacitor having first and second terminals, a first diode having a first terminal coupled to the second terminal of the sample capacitor and a second terminal coupled to a first sense electrode, and a second diode having a first terminal coupled to the second terminal of the sample capacitor and a second terminal coupled to a second sense electrode. The sample capacitor and diodes are coupled to a control circuit. The control circuit…

Microcontroller input/output connector state retention in low-power modes

Granted: December 6, 2016
Patent Number: 9513691
A microcontroller is operable in a low-power mode and includes one or more I/O connectors, as well as an I/O controller operable to provide control signals for controlling a state of a particular one of the I/O connectors. The I/O controller is powered off or deactivated during the low-power mode. The microcontroller also includes I/O connector state control logic operable to control the state of the particular one of the I/O connectors in accordance with the control signals from the I/O…