The ICL3238E contains 3. 0V to 5. 5V powered RS‑232 transmitters/receivers that meet ElA/TIA-232 and V. 28/V. 24 specifications, even at VCC = 3. 0V. It provides ±15kV ESD protection (IEC61000-4-2 Air Gap and Human Body Model) on transmitter outputs and receiver inputs (RS‑232 pins). Targeted applications are cell phones, Palmtops, and data cables in which the low operational power consumption and even lower standby power consumption is critical. Efficient on-chip charge pumps coupled with manual and enhanced automatic powerdown functions reduce the standby supply current to a 10nA trickle. Small footprint packaging and the use of small, low value capacitors ensure board space savings. Data rates greater than 250kbps are ensured at worst-case load conditions and provide compatibility with popular PC communication software. The ICL3238E is a five driver, three receiver device optimized for DCE applications with full hardware handshaking. It includes a noninverting, always-active receiver for RING INDICATOR monitoring. The ICL3238E features an enhanced automatic powerdown function that powers down the on-chip power-supply and driver circuits. Automatic powerdown occurs when all receiver and transmitter inputs detect no signal transitions for a period of 30s. The ICL3238E automatically powers back up whenever it senses a transition on any transmitter or receiver input. The transmitter and logic inputs include active feedback resistors that retain the input state when driven to a valid logic level. Application Note AN9863 summarizes the features of each device in the ICL32xxE 3V RS-232 family.


  • Pb-free (RoHS compliant)
  • ESD protection for RS-232 I/O pins to ±15kV (IEC61000)
  • Active feedback resistors on TX and logic inputs
  • Manual and enhanced automatic powerdown features
  • Pin compatible replacement for MAX3238E, MAX3238, and SP3238E
  • Meets EIA/TIA-232 and V.28/V.24 specifications at 3V
  • RS-232 compatible outputs at 2.7V supply
  • Flow through pinout
  • Latch-up free
  • On-chip voltage converters require only four external capacitors
  • Receiver and transmitter hysteresis for improved noise immunity
  • Guaranteed minimum data rate: 250kbps
  • Guaranteed minimum slew rate: 6V/µs
  • Wide power supply range: Single +3V to +5.5V
  • Low supply current in powerdown state: 10nA


  • Any System Requiring RS-232 Communication Ports Battery Powered, Hand-Held, and Portable Equipment Data Cradles Modems, Printers and other Peripherals Cellular/Mobile Phones, Data Cables

Product Options

Part Number Part Status Pkg. Type Carrier Type MOQ Buy Sample
Active SSOP Tube 705
Active SSOP Reel 1000
Active TSSOP Tube 500
Active TSSOP Reel 2500

Documentation & Downloads

Title language Type Format File Size Date
Datasheets & Errata
ICL3238E Datasheet Datasheet PDF 383 KB
Application Notes & White Papers
R15AN0002: RS-485 Transient Protection in Industrial DC-Supply Buses Application Note PDF 178 KB
How to Simplify Industrial PC Interfaces 简体中文 White Paper PDF 920 KB
AN1992: Isolating RS-232 Interfaces with High-Speed Digital Optocouplers Application Note PDF 395 KB
AN1987: RS-485 External Fail-Safe Biasing for Isolated Long Haul Buses Application Note PDF 443 KB
AN1986: External Fail-Safe Biasing of RS-485 Networks Application Note PDF 582 KB
AN1985: Transient Protection for the Standard RS-485 Transceiver: ISL3152E Application Note PDF 335 KB
AN1989: RS-422 vs RS-485: Similarities and Key Differences Application Note PDF 440 KB
AN1979: Surge Protection simplified with Intersil's Overvoltage Protected (OVP) Transceivers Application Note PDF 500 KB
AN1977: Transient Voltage Suppressors: Operation and Features Application Note PDF 365 KB
AN1980: Ground Potential Differences: Origin and Remedies Application Note PDF 375 KB
AN1978: Surge Protection for Intersil's Standard RS-485 Transceivers Application Note PDF 369 KB
AN1976: Important Transient Immunity Tests for RS-485 Networks Application Note PDF 338 KB
AN9863: 3V to +5.5V, 250k-1Mbps, RS-232 Transmitters/Receivers Application Note PDF 372 KB
PCN13060 - Test Site Change for the Listed Intersil Products Product Change Notice PDF 223 KB
PCN12094 - Alternate Manufacturing Site for Assembly of the Listed Intersil Packaged Products - Amkor Technology, Philippines (ATP) Product Change Notice PDF 98 KB
PCN11116 - Alternate Manufacturing Site for Assembly of the Listed Intersil 28l SSOP Products - ANST (Wuxi CR Micro-Assembly Technology Ltd.) Product Change Notice PDF 180 KB
ICL3238E IBIS Model Model IBS 59 KB
Analog ICs Brochure 日本語 Brochure PDF 4.20 MB
PLC18018 - General Q3 Product Life Cycle Notice Product Life Cycle Notice PDF 388 KB
PA14042 - Minimum Line Quantity Change Product Advisory PDF 363 KB