Microcontrollers and Embedded Systems

Course in Advanced Microelectronics Master programme (1st year)


Teachers: Prof. Corneliu Burileanu
Teaching Assistants: Vlad Popescu

Course Description

The “Microcontrollers and Embedded Systems” course presents several typical microcontroller architectures. The presentation addresses subjects such as memory hierarchy (cache memories, memory management), ARM memory management unit (MMU) architecture and embedded ARM applications. Finally, the course guides the students through the designing issues for a simple processor (logic design, data path design, register transfer level design Control logic).

The laboratory aims to highlight the architecture attributes for an 8051 microcontroller and to provide the students with a basic understanding regarding on-chip peripherals, such as analog and digital I/O ports, ADCs, DACs, UARTs, Timers, etc. The students are required to develop a complete software & hardware application using an 8051 microcontroller.

The main purpose of this subject is to develop the student abilities to apply the general knowledge of the microcontroller architecture in specific projects. The skill to evaluate the performance criteria of an embedded system and to choose the right processor for an actual application is pointed out.


  1. The 8051 Microcontroller Core
  2. ARM Architectures
  3. Designing a simple processor: “MU0”
  4. Memory hierarchy
  5. ARM memory management unit (MMU) architecture
  6. Embedded ARM applications


The course slides and the laboratory papers are available on Moodle.


Laboratory (project oral evaluation): 50%
Course final exam (homework + oral evaluation): 50%