PSoC® helped shrink critical circuit board to enable small form-factor of Aries camera involved in the rescue of the 33 trapped in the San José mine near Copiapó, Chile. Cypress Semiconductor’s PSoC programmable system-on-chip played an important part. California-based Central California Video Engineering & Manufacturing (CCV), a subsidiary of Aries Industries, built the specialised camera that was dropped into the initial borehole to deliver the first pictures that confirmed the miners were alive. A single PSoC chip replaced an entire 51 mm wide circuit board, enabling the ultra-thin camera that was lowered 700 m below ground to the miners. The PSoC device inside the camera provides bandpass filtering and demodulation of the control signal protocol.The camera used in the rescue was the WC1750 Slimline Dual-View Waterwell Inspection Color Camera. It has a maximum outside diameter of only 44.45 mm, perfect for inspecting small boreholes. The camera has adjustable focus, electronic shutter (iris), adjustable lighting and rotation control, front view, side view selection and can withstand a depth of 1,525 m. It uses LED lighting technology that has a 10,000-hour operating life.“We were obviously thrilled to play an important role in this dramatic rescue,” said AriesCCV Vice President of Research and Development, Mike McGrew. “Our engineers work hard to develop cameras that perform at the highest level in grueling conditions. Their hard work, including using PSoC to shrink the design, paid enormous benefits in this case. We’re very proud of this accomplishment.”“It’s exciting to see that PSoC enabled the small form factor of this amazing camera, and of course to see the results of those efforts,” said Norm Taffe, Executive VP of Cypress’s Consumer and Computation Division. “The ability to integrate multiple components in a single chip is only one of many benefits of the PSoC approach. PSoC also speeds time-to-market, and lets engineers make critical changes at any time in the product life cycle. That’s why PSoC is in literally thousands of systems from white goods and cell phones, to industrial controls and medical devices.”PSoC’s unique architecture of programmable analog and digital resources integrated with a microcontroller delivers a number of important benefits to system designers, including time-to-market, the ability to react to change, reduced components due to integration, power savings, inventory reduction, and supplier consolidation. All of these benefits are important factors in PSoC’s growth story. The PSoC architecture is also at the core of other Cypress offerings, such as the TrueTouchTM touchscreen solution, CapSenseTM touch-sensing and PowerPSoCTM controllers for LED lighting.Cypress recently introduced the PSoC 3 and PSoC 5 families, which deliver unparalleled integration and flexibility across 8-, 16-, and 32-bit applications. These new products dramatically expand the served available market for PSoC products.