Arm® Cortex®-M33 in a nutshell

The Arm® Cortex®-M33 core processor is designed for IoT and embedded applications that require efficient security or digital-signal control. The processor has many optional features including a digital signal processing extension (DSP), TrustZone security for hardware-enforced isolation, memory-protection units (MPUs) and a floating-point unit (FPU).

The Cortex-M33 brings around 20% more performance than the Cortex-M4 and reaches 1.5 DMIPS/MHz and 4.02 CoreMark/MHz.

The Cortex-M33 processor achieves an optimal blend between real-time determinism, energy efficiency, software productivity and system security. This opens the door for many new applications and opportunities across diverse industries.

Key features of the Arm® Cortex®-M33 core

  • Armv8-M architecture
  • Bus interface AHB-lite, Harvard bus architecture
  • Thumb/Thumb-2 subset instruction support
  • 3-stages pipeline
  • Optional TrustZone for Armv8-M, with optional Security Attribution Unit of up to 8 regions
  • DSP extension: optional DSP/SIMD instructions, single cycle 16/32-bit MAC, single cycle dual 16-bit MAC, 8/16-bit SIMD arithmetic
  • Floating Point Unit: optional single precision floating point unit, IEEE 754 compliant
  • Optional Memory Protection Unit (MPU) with up to 16 regions per security state
  • Non-maskable Interrupt (NMI) and up to 480 physical interrupts with 8 to 256 priority levels
  • Wakeup interrupt controller
  • Several sleep modes, with integrated Wait For Interrupt (WFI) a Wait for Event (WFE) plus sleep on exit capability, sleep and deep sleep signals
  • JTAG and Serial Wire Debug ports with up to 8 breakpoints and 4 watchpoints
  • Optional Instruction Trace (ETM), Micro Trace Buffer (MTB), Data Trace (DWT), and Instrumentation Trace (ITM)
arm cortex m33 Arm Cortex-M33 block diagram (source:Arm)

Key advantages of the Arm® Cortex®-M33 core

Armv8-M architecture

The Cortex-M33 benefits from the Armv8-M architecture. This architecture implements programmer models designed for low-latency processing and provides the option to implement a memory protection unit (MPU) based on protected memory system architecture (PMSA). It includes TrustZone technology for system-wide hardware isolation, providing confidentiality to the system.

TrustZone technology

TrustZone creates a secure, isolated world to provide confidentiality and integrity to the system, protecting your chip from software attacks. It enables the intelligence and connectivity features to be deployed in the sensors, while protecting the data transmitted.

Thanks to TrustZone security on the Cortex-M33 processor, programmers can use a familiar programming model to achieve software isolation and create the security foundations required for modern IoT devices more easily.

Lower design costs and easier system design

The Cortex-M33 includes digital signal processing (DSP), single instruction on multiple data (SIMD) and MAC instructions that help reduce design costs and simplify overall system design, software development and debugging.

The Cortex Microcontroller Software Interface Standard (CMSIS) enables consistent device support and simple software interfaces to Cortex-M processors and their peripherals. This eases software reuse, reduces the learning curve for microcontroller developers, and reduces the time to market of new devices.

Large scope of applications

Cortex-M33 core is equipped with the essential microcontroller features, including low-latency interrupt handling, integrated sleep modes, debug and trace capabilities, making it the ideal processor for most applications, including industrial, smart metering, wearables, home automation, and medical applications.

Machine learning-ready

Use cases with machine-learning capabilities are expanding and changing how we interact with devices and machines everywhere. The Cortex-M33 processor is scalable and flexible enough to run any type of machine-learning workload.

Wearables with size- and power- constraint must continuously process multiple sensor feeds to maximize responsiveness. The processing power and security foundation of Cortex-M33 allow the intelligence and connectivity features to be deployed in the sensors, while protecting the data transmitted.

Microcontrollers based on the Arm® Cortex®-M33

ST combines the Arm Cortex-M33 core with its unique proprietary low-power technology and expertise in security to allow developers to address the needs of applications requiring low power, high-performance processing, as well as security.

Get started with our most popular Arm® Cortex®-M33 development kit

NUCLEO-L552ZE-Q STM32 Nucleo-144 development board with STM32L552ZE MCU, SMPS, supports Arduino, ST Zio and morpho connectivity
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