RP2040 – Raspberry’s first microcontroller chip

RP2040 microcontroller chip

RP2040 Microcontroller

The heart of the first microcontroller by RaspberryPi ie Pico is the newest and first of its kind company’s Arm chip, RP2040. With its high performance, low cost, ease of use, large on-chip memory and symmetric dual-core processor complex, it allows the user to take up high power projects for long durations.



The RP2040 is already a hit in the market and is widely being used in a number of boards namely Pico, XIAO RP2040, Nano RP 2040 Connect, Feather RP 2040 for communicating with almost every external device and opening the gates to the world of IoT.


For the exterior, the chip is in a 7 × 7 mm QFN-56 SMD package made from 40nm silicon. Wondering, how can you get started with the chip? Well, Easy!

The RP 2040 microcontroller can be programmed using the Assembly, C/C++, MicroPython or Rust.

The chip also features programmable I/O blocks that help in running tiny codes of programs independent of the two cores.


The name of the chip has been derived from

  1. Number of processor cores (2)
  2. Loosely which type of processor (M0+)
  3. floor(log2(ram / 16k))
  4. floor(log2(nonvolatile / 16k)) or 0 if no onboard nonvolatile storage

RP2040 microcontroller chip meaning



Both the hardware and the software of the chip are intricately designed to provide maximum ease and user experience to the customers. The key features of the Raspberry Pi 2040 are:

  1. Dual ARM Cortex-M0+ @ 133MHz
  2. DMA controller
  3. On-chip programmable LDO to generate a core voltage
  4. 264kB on-chip SRAM in six independent banks
  5. Support for up to 16MB of off-chip Flash memory via dedicated QSPI bus
  6. Fully-connected AHB crossbar
  7. On-chip programmable LDO to generate a core voltage
  8. Interpolator and integer divider peripherals
  9. 2 on-chip PLLs to generate USB and core clocks
  10. 30 GPIO pins, 4 of which can be used as analogue inputs

Provided by the Rasberry Pi Foundation, the official datasheet of the rp2040 further elaborates on the features of the chip.

You can head to the RP2040 datasheet by clicking on the link and learn more about it!






RP2040 datasheet


Now, let’s look at the hardware of this incredible chip. What has the Rasberry Pi foundation done differently? Let’s dive into it!


The hardware of the RP2040 contains minimal circuitry to make an easy-to-use functional design that can run your code.

RP 2040 is a 56 pin, 7x7mm QFN (Quad Flat No-leads) package with a small pitch (0.4mm pin-to-pin spacing). Code is directly executed from external memory, through a dedicated SPI, DSPI or QSPI interface.

The SWD is used for debugging.

The internal SRAM contains the code/data and is accessed via AHB bus fabric connections


Furthermore, Raspberry Pi has added a bunch of other hardware features as well to create this high performance microcontroller.

You can check these features out at the official hardware design sheet released by the company.




Even after being the only microcontroller by the company, the rp2040 is not widely popular because of its features BUT for something else!

Well, you guessed it! It’s the selling point of this highly useful chip. With a total cost of a mere $1 or 76INR, this product has been a massive hit since its release. Well, no wonder!


Overall, we found the rp2040 to be a highly impressive product with some great specifications and hardware designs that give its customers unrivalled power and flexibility


See alsoWhat is Raspberry Pi Zero and Pi Zero-W? Comparison of Pi 3 vs Pi Zero vs Pi Zero W


Let us know what you think about Raspberry Pi’s first microcontroller chip RP 2040 in the comment section below.


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