STM32 Nucleo F401RE Development Board

Board of Pinout Diagram

The STM32 Nucleo boards are the official Development Boards form STMicroelectronics. It features the ARM Cortex M4 32-bit STM32F401RET6 microcontroller which is in LQFP64 package. The Boards pinout is similar to Arduino UNO and has many other additional pins to expand performance. This board also comes with an integrated ST-LINK/V2-1 programmer and debugger; hence it is very easy to get started with this board.

As shown in the image above there are three LEDs, where LD1 is for indicating USB communication, LD2 is programmable LED and LD3 indicates power. Similarly there are two push buttons where one is user programmable and the other is to reset the Microcontroller. The Board operates with 3.3V supply but a wide voltage range of 7-12V can be provided to the VIN pin since it has an on-board voltage regulator.

Nucleo-F401RE Pin Configuration

The STM32 Nucleo board pinout is shown above. As you can see there are two sets of pins. The pin one resembles the Arduino UNO and the blue one is the STM32 style (Morpho). The arduino like pins are female connector pins which exactly match the order and position of Arduino UNO pins and hence any Arduino shield can be used with these development boards.

The Arduino pins are split into category CN5, CN6, CN8 and CN9. Each category pins can be tabulated as follows

Pin CategoryPin TypePin namesDescription
CN6PowerIOREF3.3V Reference Voltage pin
RESETResets the Microcontroller
+3.3VProvides 3.3V as output can also be used to power the MCU
+5V5V output only pin
GNDGround pins
CN8Analog Pins and I2CA0-A1Used to measure Analog Voltage
A4 and A5These pins can also be used for I2C Communication A4 is SDA and A5 is SCL
CN5Digital Pins and SPID8-D15Digital GPIO pins
AVDDCan be used to provide analog reference voltage
GNDGround Pins
D13, D12. D11 and D10Acts as SCK, MISO, MOSI and CS pins respectively for SPI communication
CN9Digital Pins and USARTD0 to D7Digital GPIO pins
D0 and D1Acts as Rx and Tx pins respectively for USART communication

Apart from the Arduino pins the board also has 76 (38+38) GPIO pins as male headers on either side of the board as shown above. These pins are classified into CN7 and CN10 with each having 38 Pins. They comprise of GPIO pins, Analog Pins, Timer Pins and Power pins. The name of the pins can be found in the image above. They are also categorized with the table below

Pin CategoryPin TypePin namesDescription
CN7Port pinsPC0, PC1, PC2, PC3, PC10, PC11, PC12, PC13, PC14, PC15Port C digital I/O pins
PD2Port D I/O pin
PA0, PA1, PA4, PA13, PA14, PA15Port A I/O pins
PB7, PB8 and PB9Port B I/O pin
PH0 and PH1Port H I/O pins
PowerVBATCan be used to power them module from battery
+3.3VProvides 3.3V as output can also be used to power the MCU
+5V5V output only pin
VINUnregulated input power pin
RESETResets the MCU
IOREFReference Voltage Pin
CN10Port PinsPC4, PC5, PC6, PC7, PC8, PC9Port C I/O Pins
PA2, PA3, PA4, PA6, PA7, PA10, PA11 and PA12Port A I/O Pins
PB1, PB2, PB3, PB4, PB5, PB6, PB8, PB9, PB10, PB12, PB14, PB15Port B I/O Pins
PowerU5V5V Power Pin
GNDSystem Ground of the MCU
AGNDAnalog Ground Pin

STM32 Nucleo-F401RE Technical Specifications

MicrocontrollerSTM32F401RET6 (32-bit)
ArchitectureARM Cortex M4 CPU with FPU
Power consumption2.4uA at standby without RTC
CPU Frequency84 MHz
Crystal Oscillator Range4 to 26 MHz
MCU Operating Voltage (VDD)1.7V to 3.6V
Board Operating Voltage (VIN)7V to 15V
Flash Memory512KB
GPIO Pins50
ADC12-bit 16Channel
RTCIn-built 32kHz with calibration
Timers16-bit (6)32-bit (2)
Watchdog Timers2
USART/UART Communication4
I2C Communication3
SPI Communication3
USB2.0 SupportYes
Internal Crystal OscillatorYes, 16MHz
On Board DebuggerYes, Serial Wire and JTAG

Other Development Boards

Arduino UNO, Arduino Pro Mini, Arduino Mega, Arduino Due, Arduino Leonardo, Raspberry Pi, PIC Development Board, AVR Development Board, MSP430 Launchpad, Intel Edison, ESP32

How to Program STM32 Nucleo Boards

The Nucleo Development Boards is relatively easy to get started and learn since it has an in-built programmer and debugger. The Board can be programmed with many Development tool chains which are listed below

  1. Keil MDK-ARM
  2. IAR Workbench
  3. GCC based IDE
  4. ARM Mbed (online)

Out of these the Keil MDK is the most used one. It is beginner friendly and on top of that it is free to use, just download the IDE and its respective drive from link below.

Software: Keil MDK Version 5

Driver:  Nucleo USB Driver


The STM32 MCUs are commonly used in many industrial and commercial products these days. Some specific application include

  • Low Power portable Electronics
  • Robotics
  • System Automation
  • IOT
Component Datasheet PDF: STM32 Nucleo F401RE Datasheet  

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