TI MSP430 Launchpad

These pages give examples and tips for programming the MSP430 range of microprocessors from Texas Instruments using the MSP430 Launchpad development kit.

The MSP430 Launchpad comes with a 20 pin DIL MSP430G2553 chip installed. The data sheet for this can be found here. To program these devices and to understand the material presented on this site you will need to refer to the data sheet. Just to make it clear you will need to refer to the MSP430G2553 data sheet. You will also need to refer to the MSP430x2xxx family user-guide. The device data sheet tells you what hardware peripherals each chip has and also how these can be mapped to the device pins. The user-guide explains how to configure and use each peripheral and the CPU itself.

Coding Environments

There are a number of approaches for developing programs. I prefer to use an integrated development environment (IDE) that provides: an editor with syntax based code highlighting, a compiler to compile the code into machine format and tell you where any syntax errors occur, and an upload tool to upload the code to the launch pad.

A nice high level IDE is Energia which provides an Arduino style programming environment using cpp style code to develop applications using objects that allow you to access the functionality of the microprocessor. The disadvantage with this approach is that it is limiting if you want to interact directly with the microprocessor hardware to create new functionality. To do this the preferred approach is to code in c as this allows for simple interaction with the microprocessor registers.

Code Composer Studio (CCS) from Texas Instruments is a fully functional IDE that also provides hardware emulation and in circuit debugging so that you can, simulate the circuit in software and observe the contents of the registers, as well as interrogate the actual registers in the microprocessor. Whilst this is all very nice it can be rather daunting for first time users. For the MSP430 there is a free version for windows and Linux and instructions on how to use this to program a blink application can be found here.

My preferred IDE is actually Energia as it also allows you to bypass the cpp code interface and code directly in c. It is small and very easy to install on Windows and Mac. Instructions for developing the blink application using Energia can be found here.


Using the switches on the Launchpad

An example showing how to use and debounce both switches on the launchpad.

Serial communications

Describes how to use the hardware UART on the MSP430G2553 to send and receive data from the microprocessor

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