Freescale Technology Helps Bring Prototypes to Life on Discovery Channel TV Series : PROTOTYPE THIS Engineering "Dream Team" Uses Latest Freescale MCU and Sensor Technology to Create Tomorrow's Innovations - Today

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Freescale Semiconductor is providing critical, behind-the-scenes semiconductor technology for PROTOTYPE THIS, an all-new Discovery Channel series, premiering Wednesday, Oct. 15. PROTOTYPE THIS takes viewers on a first-hand journey through the system design process to discover how inventions come to life. The series features a team of expert engineers who in each episode work to come up with one-of-a-kind prototypes of tomorrow for people to experience today. The PROTOTYPE THIS team features Joe Grand, electrical engineer and inventor; Terry Sandin, professional special effects creator; Dr. Zoz Brooks, a robot and computer expert; and Dr. Mike North, material science and biomimetics expert.

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From actively engaging in the brainstorming process to supplying the parts that bring our creations to life, the engineers at Freescale have been invaluable in making our ideas reality.

Freescale involvement

Freescale provided advanced semiconductor devices and development boards for the PROTOTYPE THIS team to work with during the series. A sampling of key Freescale products and boards used includes:

QG8 8-bit microcontroller (MCU) MMA7260 3-axis, low-g accelerometer QE8 ultra-low-power 8-bit MCU MPC5121e development board Flexis™ AC development kit SH8 8-bit MCU The PROTOTYPE THIS team used Freescale technology to create a wide range of innovative prototypes designed to help people with everyday activities, such as pizza delivery, fire fighting, personal crash safety and road rage management.

Viewers can see these prototypes and others come to life when the PROTOTYPE THIS series begins on the Discovery Channel, Oct. 15, 2008. Viewers also can submit show feedback and prototype ideas on the PROTOTYPE THIS message board.

Joe Grand and Freescale collaboration

PROTOTYPE THIS Co-host Joe Grand has worked with Freescale for several years on a variety of design projects and was a finalist in the 2007 Freescale Black Widow Design Challenge. In a recent interview with, Grand discussed the recent Defcon conference where he received support from Freescale in designing the Defcon 16 conference badges. "They [Freescale] have a lot of engineers who truly love engineering and they love coming up with new products that use their technologies," said Grand.

Grand considers Freescale to be an integral part of the PROTOTYPE THIS team. "Freescale has been a vital part of the PROTOTYPE THIS production since the beginning," said Grand. "From actively engaging in the brainstorming process to supplying the parts that bring our creations to life, the engineers at Freescale have been invaluable in making our ideas reality."

Series schedule

PROTOTYPE THIS is a 13-part series premiering Oct. 15, 2008. Viewers should check their local listings for show times in their areas.


Video demonstration of Joe Grand's Defcon Badge CNET article on PROTOTYPE THIS 2009 Freescale Technology Forum Design Challenge – Call for entries are open Freescale University Programs

Freescale's commitment to today's and tomorrow's engineers goes beyond PROTOTYPE THIS and the FTF Design Challenge. Freescale's University Programs engage with engineering students and faculty members across the globe to teach and learn from the engineers of tomorrow. The University Programs focus on providing educators and students with the resources needed to excel in classroom environments. The programs also emphasize collaboration with research consortia and leading universities to develop future semiconductor technologies and achieve breakthrough innovations. The University Programs provide researchers and students with a rich experience and first-hand knowledge of working in the sciences.

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Dale Weisman
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