EV Component Roundup: New Chips Yield Quieter, More Efficient ADAS

October 31, 2022 by Abdulwaliy Oyekunle

EV makers are developing more comfortable and higher-performance vehicles one chip at a time. Here, we'll highlight a new MEMS sensor, SiC-based power module, and radar transceiver.

Lately, there has been an influx of novel automotive solutions that promise to take electric and autonomous vehicles to the next level. Such solutions include automotive sensors and robust transceivers to improve the performance and ease of autonomous driving.

At the same time, the latest automotive innovations may accelerate the design specifications and requirements of next-gen vehicles. For example, a new vibration sensor from STMicroelectronics is set to deliver acoustically comfortable cars for a seamless driving experience.

This article looks at new automotive solutions, like ST's vibration sensor, recently introduced to the market.

ST's Noise-canceling Sensor Makes EVs Even Quieter

In an attempt to reduce the noise caused by vibration in electric vehicles, STMicroelectronics has introduced an automotive MEMS accelerometer sensor that is optimized for accuracy in controlling and quieting the noise from the in-cabin acoustic environment.



The AIS25BA. Image used courtesy of STMicroelectronics


The MEMS sensor, AIS25BA (datasheet), is said to improve the road-noise cancelation system of a vehicle by leveraging active noise-control (ANC) techniques. The techniques use noise-cancelation algorithms in conjunction with sensors that measure the ambient sounds and eliminate vibration using noise-canceling waveforms that act as anti-vibration (canceling) sounds. Thanks to the ANC techniques, the 3-axis digital accelerometer sensor records an ultralow noise density at 30 µg/√Hz for the X and Y axes and 50 µg/√Hz for the Z-axis.

The vibration sensor features a low latency value of 266 µs. It also has a time-division multiplex (TDM) digital interface that synchronizes the system's outputs from multiple accelerometers that measure vibrations throughout the vehicle. The product’s full-scale measurement ranges from ±3.85 g to ±7.7 g. It can also operate with a minimum input voltage of 1.71 V.

The product is AEC-Q100 qualified and packaged in a 14-lead 2.5 mm x 2.5 mm x 0.86 mm LGA package.


EV Onboard Chargers Meet onsemi's SiC-based Power Modules

Thanks to their robust electrical characteristics, wide bandgap materials such as silicon carbide are often the go-to choice to manufacture EV power modules. One recent silicon carbide-based product for electric vehicles comes from onsemi with its new APM32 series of power modules. These power modules are built for use in onboard charging and high-voltage (HV) DC-DC conversion within all types of electric vehicles. 


The APM32 series H−Bridge power module

The APM32 series H−bridge power module. Image used courtesy of onsemi


The APM32 series includes three products: NVXK2TR40WXTNVXK2TR80WDT, and NVXK2KR80WDT

According to onsemi, the APM32 power modules are the first commercial power modules to adopt SiC technology into a transfer-molded package to enhance efficiency and shorten the charge time of electric vehicles. The series is specifically designed for high-power 11–22 kW onboard chargers (OBC). 

Fabio Necco, onsemi's VP and general manager of automotive power solutions, remarked that the series leverages SiC technology to minimize losses and overall system volume.

While NVXK2TR40WXT and NVXK2TR80WDT are configured in H-bridge topology and find application in OBC and HV DC-DC conversion stages, the  NVXK2KR80WDT is configured in Vienna rectifier topology. The modules are qualified to AEC-Q101 and AQG 324 for automotive use and are packaged in dual inline packages (DIP)


NXP Releases Radar Transceivers for ADAS

The last automotive solution we will take a look at comes from NXP. The company’s latest automotive solution, TEF82xx (fact sheet), is its second-generation 77 GHz RFCMOS radar transceiver. It features three transmitters, four receivers, ADC conversion, a phase rotator, and a low-phase-noise VCO.

In addition, it covers the radar frequency band from 76 GHz to 81 GHz. With its high RF performance, the product can cover distances beyond 300 m and detect, separate, and classify smaller objects at finer resolutions down to a sub-degree level.

When integrated with S32R radar processors, the TEF82xx RFCMOS radar transceiver is said to deliver fine angular resolution, processing power, and ranges required for production-ready imaging radar solutions.

Speaking on this development, Steffen Spannagel, NXP's VP and general manager of ADAS, said that integrating the TEF82xx radar transceiver with S32R45 processors could enable OEMs to achieve ranges of up to 300 m or longer with sub-degree resolutions for azimuth and elevation in high-performance imaging radar applications.


TEF82xx RFCMOS block diagram

TEF82xx RFCMOS block diagram. Image used courtesy of NXP


The TEF82xx is packaged in an embedded wafer level ball (e-WLB) grid array and is an ISO 26262-compliant device targeting ASIL Level B.