Fujitsu Launches USB 3.0 to SATA Bridge IC

                                                             Supports 5Gbps SuperSpeed USB

Langen, Germany, — August 07, 2009 — Fujitsu Microelectronics Europe (FME) today announces the MB86C30A, one of the first available USB 3.0 to SATA (*1) bridge ICs, which supports the ultra-fast 5Gbps maximum data transfer rate of SuperSpeed USB, the USB 3.0 specification (*2). The MB86C30A is the first in Fujitsu’s new MB86C30 Series of USB 3.0 to SATA bridge ICs. When embedded in PC peripheral devices the IC provides an order of magnitude increase in data transfer rates from external storage devices, such as hard disk drives (HDDs), to PCs, in comparison to the USB 2.0 specification.

In addition to the bridge functionality, the new IC also features a high-speed data encryption / decryption engine, offering high security without impairing the high-speed performance of USB 3.0.

Today, PCs and digital audio-visual equipment handle an ever-growing volume of data from digital photos, to audio and video files. These market needs are driving storage devices to have ever-increasing data volumes and speeds. The ubiquitous USB interface, used widely in external HDDs and memory sticks, has had a maximum data transfer rate of 480Mbps under the USB 2.0 specification, too slow to meet current demands for the ability to read and write high volumes of data in a shorter time. The USB 3.0 specification (SuperSpeed USB) ratified in November 2008 resolves this issue by providing a maximum data transfer rate that is over 10 times faster than that of USB 2.0. In addition, this next generation specification includes greater protocol efficiency as well as improved power management techniques, which enable lower power consumption.

The MB86C30A is a single-chip solution that integrates all the USB signal communication control circuits, SATA communication control circuits, protocol and command control circuits that are the necessary functions for constructing an external USB storage device and to realise 5Gbps data transfer to a host PC.

The device also contains an embedded AES (*3) engine that supports two operation modes: Cipher Block Chaining (CBC), a mode for encrypting block data; and XTS, the XEX encryption mode with tweak and ciphertext stealing. Both modes are ideal for hard disks in terms of security, strength and speed of encryption/decryption.

The encryption engine makes it possible to store encrypted data on HDDs, thus protecting confidential information from threats when portable devices are lost or stolen – a well-publicised problem in recent years – or to prevent data leaks when storage devices are disposed of. Also, compared to software encryption, this hardware encryption does not burden the CPU of the host PC, and provides better protection of user’s data.

The MB86C30 series is being jointly developed with Fujitsu Laboratories Limited and Fujitsu LSI Solutions Limited, whose extensive expertise and technologies for high-speed interfaces(*4) have been instrumental in realising this IC. Going forward, Fujitsu Microelectronics will strengthen and expand the line-up of USB 3.0 standard products for storage devices.

Product Features

USB 3.0 (SuperSpeed USB) solution for external storage
The MB86C30A USB 3.0 to SATA bridge IC for PC peripherals is a single-chip solution that integrates the USB signal communication control circuits, SATA signal communication control circuits, protocol and command control circuits, and Fujitsu proprietary high-speed serial interface technologies, thus enabling 5Gbps high-speed data transfer. The 5Gbps maximum transfer rate of USB 3.0 allows a two hour Full HD video to be copied to a 3.5-inch hard disk drive in three to four minutes.

High-speed AES encryption / decryption engine

The new IC features an AES encryption / decryption engine, which eliminates the need for encryption software and an encryption / decryption IC. This makes it possible to encode data stored on external storage HDDs featuring standard SATA HDD, widely used for PCs and other related products. Furthermore, the IC supports data transfer speeds that can cover SATA HDD performance, allowing protection of customer data with the same operation and usability of external storage HDD that do not support encryption. High-speed encryption and decryption processing at a maximum of 300MB/s, provides throughput without impairing the speed performance of USB 3.0.

The new IC integrates both USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 SATA links and PHYs and a 32-bit RISC processor to respond to requests from the USB host. Further features include SPI support for serial flash ROM, support for HID class, ATA/ATAPI device support, ATA command pass through function support, customised function support – VID/PID etc., low power consumption and a supply voltage of 1.2V – 3.3V.


The MB86C30A is manufactured in a 64-pin LQFP measuring 7 x 7mm (0.4mm pitch) using Fujitsu’s 65nm low power CMOS process technology. The first engineering samples will be available in August 2009.

Fujitsu expects the market for USB 3.0 products to expand rapidly in 2010 and plans to introduce a variety of USB 3.0 products for external storage solutions.

Key specifications

USB 3.0 to SATA bridge IC, MB86C30A


Fujitsu’s USB 3.0 to SATA bridge IC, MB86C30A (medium-resolution)
Fujitsu’s USB 3.0 to SATA bridge IC, MB86C30A (high-resolution)

Glossary and Notes

1. SATA or Serial ATA: One of the ATA interface standards for connecting PCs to mass storage devices such as hard disk drives. It is integrated into most PCs.
2. USB 3.0 Specification (Universal Serial Bus Specification 3.0): USB 3.0 is the next generation specification after the USB 2.0 serial interface, which is used widely in keyboards, mice, digital cameras, etc. Called SuperSpeed USB, it continues the simplicity of use of USB 2.0 while increasing transfer rates by 10 times, providing a maximum of 5Gbps. Version 1.0 of the specification was defined by the USB 3.0 Promoter Group and announced on November 17, 2008. The specification’s management has now been transitioned to the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF), the managing body of USB specifications.
3. AES (Advanced Encryption Standard): An encryption standard adopted by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) that is used extensively worldwide. The standard defines three key lengths of 128-bit, 192-bit and 256-bit representing increasing security strength.
4. Fujitsu’s high-speed interface technologies: Fujitsu’s technologies and expertise for Gigabit-per-second class high-speed serial interfaces such as in 40Gbps optical systems, multi-channel 10Gbps for blade servers, PCI-express, SATA and USB, etc., to realise low power consumption, small form-factors and low cost in CMOS.

About Fujitsu Microelectronics Europe

Fujitsu Microelectronics Europe (FME) is a major supplier of semiconductor products. The company provides advanced systems solutions to the automotive, digital TV, mobile telephony, communications, networking and industrial markets. Engineers from design centres dedicated to microcontrollers, graphics controllers, mixed-signal, wireless, multimedia ICs, ASIC products and software development, work closely with FME's marketing and sales teams throughout EMEA to help satisfy customers' systems development requirements. This solutions approach is supported by a broad range of advanced semiconductor devices, IP, building blocks and software.
For more information, please see: FME Homepage

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