MCUs, MOSFETs, and Wi-Fi 6E Chips Streamline Smart Automotive Design
Automotive electronics innovations simplify human-machine interaction, power systems, and interconnectivity.
From advanced infotainment dashboards to autonomous driving systems in electric vehicles (EVs), the automotive landscape is evolving at an unprecedented pace. With this transformation, OEMs heavily rely on cutting-edge electronics to enhance vehicle performance, safety, and user experience.
Infineon's TRAVEO T2G family aims to bring sharp display resolution, high performance, and multiple displays to the automotive environment. Image used courtesy of Infineon
This article highlights three chip-level announcements geared to ease the next generation of automotive design. As part of each discussion, we'll touch on notable architectures, packaging, component integration, and manufacturing techniques that enable their effective deployment.
Infineon's New Automotive MCUs Integrate Graphics Engine
Infineon announced its TRAVEO T2G Cluster family of automotive microcontrollers (MCUs) (datasheet linked) with a new graphics engine. With its smart rendering technology and dedicated graphics accelerator, the new MCUs deliver high graphics performance, while its small footprint simplifies OEM integration and reduces costs. These features make it suitable not only for infotainment and cockpit systems in automobiles and motorcycles but also for off-highway mobility, industrial, and medical applications.
Block diagram of Infineon’s TRAVEO T2G family. Image used courtesy of Infineon (Click to access datasheet for larger image.)
The new MCU's graphics engine minimizes the memory required for graphics processing by a factor of 3 to 5 for lower power consumption and costs. It also includes an optimized 2.5D graphics engine and can display complex 3D scenes for modern HMIs. These MCUs use proprietary line-based processing, resulting in lower power consumption, memory needs, and costs.
At the heart of the MCU family are two Arm Cortex-M7 cores with up to 320 MHz, 6 MB of Flash, and up to 4 MB of internal VRAM or 1 GB LPPDR4 VRAM. It also features the latest safety and security requirements.
Toshiba's Automotive MOSFETs Sport New Packaging
Toshiba released two automotive-grade 40 V N-channel power MOSFETs based on its new U-MOS IX-H process. The company uses a new small transistor outline gull-wing leads (S-TOGL) package, characterized by its gull-wing-shaped leads extending from the sides of the component, making it suitable for surface-mount soldering.
These packages are known for their compact size, making them useful for automotive applications with space constraints. The gull-wing leads create a thermal path from the MOSFET die to the PCB, which aids in better heat dissipation. Heat dissipation is crucial in automotive applications where MOSFETs may generate heat during high-current operations. Efficient heat dissipation helps maintain a lower junction temperature in the MOSFET, which can result in improved electrical performance, including lower on-resistance. In addition, the S-TOGL packages enable systems to withstand harsh automotive conditions. The gull-wing leads provide a more robust mechanical connection to the PCB, reducing the risk of solder joint failures due to mechanical stress
Toshiba’s two new MOSFETs with S-TOGL package. Image (modified) used courtesy of Toshiba
The new MOSFETs have a voltage rating of 40 V. The XPJR6604PB (datasheet linked) can handle a continuous drain current of 200 A, and the XPJ1R004PB (datasheet linked) rates up to 160 A. The S-TOGL package and Toshiba's U-MOS IX-H process together give these devices a small footprint and low on-resistance compared to competing devices, according to Toshiba.
NXP Unveils Automotive Connectivity Portfolio With Wi-Fi 6E
Honing in on automotive communications, NXP Semiconductors announced its AW693 automotive-qualified wireless connectivity solution. This device allows dual Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3 connections with NXP's integrated EdgeLock secure subsystem to deliver multiple reliable connections in an automobile. It supports connectivity across multiple automotive platforms with NXP's application processors. Interconnectivity in vehicles is crucial for over-the-air updates, allowing OEMs to deliver new features and security updates without modifying hardware or software.
Application block diagram of NXP's AW690, a predecessor to the new AW693. Image used courtesy of NXP
The AW693 includes power amplifiers for 2.4 GHz and 5–7 GHz, low noise amplifiers for RX, Tx/Rx switches, and a Bluetooth radio. Their secure subsystem supports hardware-accelerated crypto, secure boot, key management, firmware authentication, secure lifecycle management, and anti-rollback protection.