Design Con 2015

Automotive

Carolyn Mathas
Editor
Cars have become computers on wheels, with more and more automotive design being driven by electronics. Stay up to speed on automotive design with this site. Topics discussed include hybrid and electric vehicles (EVs), infotainment, safety systems, solid-state lighting, powertrain, x-by wire, Human Machine Interface (HMI), telematics/in-vehicle navigation, and more.

Design Capacitive Touch Sensors in Five Easy Steps--Part II

The second segment in this five-part series covers layout necessary to replace mechanical buttons with capacitive sensing. An example is offered in support of the article. Read More...

Aerodynamics utilizes new tools

The automotive industry has long been an early adopter of CAD tools and computer systems to help determine the best design and to aid in its manufacture, and aerodynamics design is no exception. Read More...

Audio bus technology from ADI takes on MOST, Ethernet AVB

An audio signal distribution system for automotive use developed by Analog Devices could emerge as a strong competitor to established infotainment bus systems like MOST and Ethernet AVB. Read More...

8 Ways to clarify spurious emissions

Avoid confusion among engineers by defining terms such as carrier and bandwidth right up front. Read More...

Reflections on autonomy and anonymity (of cars and people)

Inter-car connectivity is bound to skyrocket, but will your privacy prevail? Read More...

HUDs hit the aftermarket for holiday 2014

While heads-up displays (HUDs) are appearing in 2015 cars, new display technology and the ability to embed "smart" technology into a smartphone app has allowed the automotive aftermarket to create cost-effective HUD projector systems for existing cars. Read More...

Ride control comes to your smartphone

While driverless cars are being discussed to make the commuting experience safer, the connected capability of new performance products are also enhancing enthusiasts' automotive experience. Read More...

Mexico is the new Detroit?

I recently noticed an article stating that Mexico was the new Detroit. Hmmm. Read More...

Design capacitive touch sensors in five easy steps--Part 1

In this article series, we will focus on how to design reliable capacitive touch sensors in five easy steps. Read More...

For automotive design, faster is better

ARM’s Cortex-A or Real-Time architectures. For automotive applications, the ARM solution in terms of price, feature set and performance is the Cortex-M0+, an architecture powerful enough to accommodate advanced functions such as sensorless BLDC motor control, yet simple enough to replace 8- or 16-bit devices in less processor-intensive applications such as lighting control. Read More...

Audi gets first official California self-driving permit

California is now requiring self-driving vehicle registration and Audi was at the front of the line. Read More...

500 MHz Oscilloscope for $5000 and a touch screen, too

Teledyne LeCroy's WaveJet Touch brings touch screens to a basic oscilloscope. Read More...

RESET definition and circuit implementation inside an Automotive Electronic Control Unit

Here are the basics, the nuts and bolts, for a complete understanding of the RESET sequence for an MCU in automotive apps. Read More...

Trends in Automotive Infotainment

This article discusses the challenges in connectivity and solutions available for them, including how to enable on chip radio and audio processing. Read More...

Drive by wire: Safe at any speed?

Are drive-by-wire failures anything to be worried about? Read More...

>> SEE ALL

Antilog converter linearizes carbon dioxide sensor

Simplify gas sensor interface with some analog preprocessing. Read More...

LTC Design Note: 65V 500mA step-down converter fits automotive and industrial applications

This switcher is happy to drop a 60V input all the way down to 0.8V. Read More...

Inductively sense aircraft engine valve position

Aircraft engine designers are conservative by nature, but here's a way to improve performance anyway. Read More...

Design Notes: 42V 2.5A Synchronous Step-Down Regulator with 2.5μA Quiescent Current

This efficient solution allows for small inductors and high switching frequency. Read More...

Precision capacitance meter

There's an art to capacitance measurement. What do you think of this rendition? Read More...

Sense automobile high-side current with discrete components

Use this circuit to convert a current into a voltage for measurement. Read More...

Current monitor uses Hall sensor

Use a Hall-effect sensor to measure dc current in the range of 0 to 40A. Read More...

Simple circuit helps to protect a vehicle-reverse camera

Add a delay to prevent short power pulses as you shift through reverse. Read More...

Solar-powered sensor controls traffic

A traffic-sensor post measures vehicle location and speed at an intersection, providing an accurate, effective, inexpensive approach to monitoring traffic flow. Read More...

Power USB devices from a vehicle

Supply power to two USB devices from the cigarette lighter or other power source. Read More...

Automotive switching regulators get input-transient-voltage protection

A simple scheme protects switching regulators against 50V voltage transients in automotive applications. Read More...

Automotive link uses single wire

In the automotive industry, in which the goal is to produce cars with simpler, lighter wiring looms, any interface that uses just one wire instead of two offers a distinct advantage. The circuit in Figure 1 implements a bidirectional link using a single wire, with the car's chassis or ground conductor providing a negative return path. Read More...

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Linear Technology 2A buck converter is 93% efficient at 2MHz

With many switching buck regulators on the market today that are capable of improving an automotive system design it is hard to choose the optimum one for your design. Read More...

Software turns oscilloscope to motor-drive measurements

Teledyne LeCroy's HDO8000 12-bit oscilloscope now has software specifically for measuring power and efficiency on three-phase motor drives, variable-frequency drives, and the electronics that power them. Read More...

MAX10 broadens the FPGA field

Altera's MAX series has graduated from CPLD to FPGA, and sports some unique features. Read More...

500 MHz Oscilloscope for $5000 and a touch screen, too

Teledyne LeCroy's WaveJet Touch brings touch screens to a basic oscilloscope. Read More...

IR sensor array sees a wider field of view, with low-noise imaging

Low-cost infra-red (IR) arrays provide precise imaging data and detailed heat signatures for both static and dynamic objects can be derived, and find applications in security, automotive, building automation and consumer electronics. Read More...

Programmable wireless charging ICs & ref designs target consumer, automotive

Freescale claims that in contrast to some competing products that restrict customisation, its new offerings allow design innovation and enable the rapid development of differentiated wireless charging systems. Read More...

Multiband automotive tuner ICs deliver best-in-class radio performance

The Si4790x automotive receiver family scales from economical, single-tuner designs to premium, multi-tuner car radio systems. Read More...

Driver chip provides 7-channel drop-in Darlington replacement

This 7-channel, NMOS low-side driver replaces Darlington transistor arrays in high-voltage systems; the drop-in compatible relay driver reduces power, cost and board space. Read More...

Ultracap boasts 3400 farads, boosts transportation reliability

Maxwell Technologies, Inc. has added to the company's K2 series of ultracapacitor cells with a 2.85-volt, 3400-farad ultracapacitor cell that increases the range of available specific power and stored energy in the industry-standard 60 mm cylindrical 'K2' form factor. Read More...

8-channel scope is tailor-made for power electronics measurement

With more channels, high-definition, and higher bandwidth, Teledyne LeCroy's HDO8000 oscilloscope is ideal for high-power three-phase power electronics systems analysis. Read More...

B+K Precision expands programmable power-supply line

B+K Precision has expanded its line of test-system power supplies by increasing voltage range and adding automotive tests. Read More...

Fully digital automotive class-D amp shrinks head unit BOM

The STMicroelectronics FDA2100LV automotive power amplifier with full digital architecture helps minimize noise issues and reduce BOM by up to 50% for vehicle head units and sound boosters. Read More...

Intelligent battery sensor for automotive and industrial

Today’s trends in the battery market include complex battery algorithms, higher communication data rates with the CAN bus, better safety for Li-Ion batteries and increased mission-critical dependence on energy availability. Read More...

High-voltage/high-current connector meets commercial EV challenges

Capable of handling up to 1000 V and 250 A per contact, the connectors withstand even the most extreme shock and vibration conditions found in today’s commercial vehicles. Read More...

Rectangular, low profile LED opens up design options

The Synios E4014 LED from Osram Opto Semiconductor features a rectangular and low profile shape so that, with the design, light is easily injected into light guides and uniformly distributed. Read More...

Automotive gate drivers offer ultra-low propagation delay

For applications in vehicles with 48V and 400V supply voltages such as hybrid and electric drives, Texas Instruments has developed the UCC275xx-Q1 product family of AEC-Q100-qualified single- and dual-channel gate drivers. Read More...

Automotive battery sensor packs MCU and CAN controller

Aimed at both conventional and emerging battery chemistries for automotive and industrial applications, the MM9Z1J638 battery sensor from Freescale Semiconductor combines three measurement channels, a 16/32-bit MCU, LIN 2.2 protocol and physical interface, and CAN protocol controller in a 48-pin QFN package. Read More...

IPEmotion software gets CAN traffic analyzer, improved visualization

Automotive measurement technology provider Ipetronik has introduced version 2014 R1 of its popular IPEmotion data acquisition software. Read More...

ARM Cortex A9 MCU development board runs Linux

Silica has launched a new ArchiTech development board that offers a low cost streamlined platform for Linux based designs. Read More...

Safety glass comes to automotive display screens

With display screens in cars growing bigger and bigger, the risk of injury through sharp splinters resulting from an accident is rising sharply. Read More...

Handheld device performs CAN bus diagnostics

The PCAN-Diag is a handheld device for the diagnostics of CAN busses on OSI layers 1 and 2. Read More...

Audio power amp sounds EV warning

Toshiba Electronics is offering a single-chip amplifier to support safety designs that add the sound of a conventional internal combustion engine to electric and hybrid electric vehicles. Read More...

Ada comes to ARM Linux

Ada support is now available on embedded ARM processors running Linux for safety critical code development. Read More...

Key management system secures car software updates

Security expert company Escrypt has developed a key management system that secures software updates for automotive control units. Read More...

It's an oscilloscope and...

Tektronix MDO3000 is an oscilloscope and as many as five other instruments. Now if it only had a power supply. Read More...

>> SEE ALL

Teardown: Heads-up thermal imaging camera

Wow, thermal imaging in the car. Read More...

Teardown: Airbag controller

Check out this airbag controller teardown, courtesy of Dave Jones from the EEVblog. Read More...

Teardown: OBD-II Bluetooth adapter

Peer inside an unbelievably low-cost OBD-II to Bluetooth "dongle." Read More...

Teardown: High-voltage Li-ion battery stack management - the drive for safe power

At the heart of the Chevrolet Volt, a sophisticated Li-ion battery stack management system ensures the safety and reliability of a multi-cell Li-ion battery stack capable of delivering power on demand to the Chevy Volt drive system. Read More...

Teardown reveals Chevy Volt's electronic secrets

Beyond battery chemistry and electric propulsion and control, the Chevy Volt enhanced-range electric vehicle builds in flexibility, ruggedness, and diagnostics—with attention to quality construction. Read More...

Bulldog Security RS82B remote-vehicle-starter system

Microprocessor-controlled relays let you start your car 100 yards away. Read More...

The Tesla Roadster: Sporty and electric

Prying Eyes: A modern electric sports car presents a unique design challenge. Read More...

The 24V, 300W, BLDC Kollmorgen motor integrated controller

A motor mixes mechanical and electrical beauty with questionable thermal design. Read More...

Under the hood of hybrid vehicles

Energy- and emission-efficient automobiles are increasingly relying on both combustion engines and electric motors for power. Read More...

Hybrids mark the end of the stinky city bus

Prying Eyes looks inside a hybrid gas-electric bus powered by 288 ultracapacitors. Read More...

>> SEE ALL

Design Capacitive Touch Sensors in Five Easy Steps--Part II

The second segment in this five-part series covers layout necessary to replace mechanical buttons with capacitive sensing. An example is offered in support of the article. Read More...

8 Ways to clarify spurious emissions

Avoid confusion among engineers by defining terms such as carrier and bandwidth right up front. Read More...

Design capacitive touch sensors in five easy steps--Part 1

In this article series, we will focus on how to design reliable capacitive touch sensors in five easy steps. Read More...

RESET definition and circuit implementation inside an Automotive Electronic Control Unit

Here are the basics, the nuts and bolts, for a complete understanding of the RESET sequence for an MCU in automotive apps. Read More...

Trends in Automotive Infotainment

This article discusses the challenges in connectivity and solutions available for them, including how to enable on chip radio and audio processing. Read More...

Automotive Video—The FPD-Link III--Do more with less

This article provides an overview of FPD-Link III, the advances that can be expected in the near future, and how to get even more out of the technology. Read More...

Slideshow: How NASA drives automotive technology—Part I

From deep space to the automotive space, NASA technology greatly impacts automotive design and development, and has for decades. Read More...

Use Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) for low-cost liquid level measurement—Part II

In the previous article, the basics of Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) were discussed. In this segment, we will discuss the application of TDR to liquid level sensing. Read More...

Reduce common-cause failures for robust redundancy

By replicating a component in a system, we tend to decrease the probability of failure occurrence in that system, but the effect of replication may be less than expected. Read More...

Autonomous vehicles: Are they ready for road challenges yet?

There are many ongoing developments in software and electronic controls that are very promising to autonomous vehicle safety and ultimate implementation. Let’s take a look at some of these efforts. Read More...

Use Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) for low-cost liquid level measurement—Part I

This three article series introduces the use of Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) to liquid level-sensing: Article one covers theory, article two discusses the application of TDR to liquid level-sensing and three delivers a cost effective and implemented application of TDR to liquid level-sensing including schematics and board layout Read More...

Electric vehicle infrastructure-based chargers made easy

Range anxiety is seen as one of the largest barriers to achieving consumer confidence in electric vehicles. Available charging stations will help relieve anxiety, but the need for “pay-to-charge” stations will increase, as will the need for more technology and communications in these systems. Read More...

BAW gyroscope sensors transform inertial MEMS apps

BAW technology is being used to develop a new class of solid-state MEMS gyroscopes that not only meet power, size, cost, and high volume production requirements exceedingly well, but also add higher performance to the mix. Read More...

>> SEE ALL

Audio bus technology from ADI takes on MOST, Ethernet AVB

An audio signal distribution system for automotive use developed by Analog Devices could emerge as a strong competitor to established infotainment bus systems like MOST and Ethernet AVB. Read More...

Reflections on autonomy and anonymity (of cars and people)

Inter-car connectivity is bound to skyrocket, but will your privacy prevail? Read More...

HUDs hit the aftermarket for holiday 2014

While heads-up displays (HUDs) are appearing in 2015 cars, new display technology and the ability to embed "smart" technology into a smartphone app has allowed the automotive aftermarket to create cost-effective HUD projector systems for existing cars. Read More...

Mexico is the new Detroit?

I recently noticed an article stating that Mexico was the new Detroit. Hmmm. Read More...

For automotive design, faster is better

ARM’s Cortex-A or Real-Time architectures. For automotive applications, the ARM solution in terms of price, feature set and performance is the Cortex-M0+, an architecture powerful enough to accommodate advanced functions such as sensorless BLDC motor control, yet simple enough to replace 8- or 16-bit devices in less processor-intensive applications such as lighting control. Read More...

Audi gets first official California self-driving permit

California is now requiring self-driving vehicle registration and Audi was at the front of the line. Read More...

Drive by wire: Safe at any speed?

Are drive-by-wire failures anything to be worried about? Read More...

The promise of the connected car

A recent forum at the Churchill Club in the San Jose area discussed the Connected Car and the practical realization of the phrase. Read More...

The connected car and congested traffic

A recent road trip from the SF Bay Area to San Diego demonstrated how new automotive technologies can be tripped up by a simple traffic hiccup. Read More...

Visit to Clemson University's Automotive Electronics Laboratory

The lab targets four primary areas of research: automotive electronics, aerospace electronics, electromagnetic compatibility, and electromagnetic modeling. Read More...

>> SEE ALL

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