Connected Car News: AEye, Spirent, Renesas, ANSYS, On Semi, Synopsys, MediaTek & Infineon

In connected car news this week were Rivian, BMW, Daimler, HERE, AEye, Spirent, Renesas, ANSYS, On Semi, Sysnopsys, MediaTek and Infineon.

Rivian Funding from Amazon

Rivian has announced an equity investment round of $700M led by Amazon. The investment comes on the heels of Rivian’s reveal of the all-electric R1T pickup and R1S SUV at the LA Auto Show last November.

Rivian will remain an independent company. Amazon is leading the round, which includes participation from existing shareholders. Additional details about this investment are not being disclosed at this time.

BMW & Daimler Mobility

The BMW Group and Daimler AG are pooling their mobility services to create a new global player providing sustainable urban mobility for customers. The two companies are investing more than €1 billion in total to develop and more closely intermesh their offerings for car-sharing, ride-hailing, parking, charging and multimodal transport. The cooperation comprises five joint ventures: REACH NOW for multimodal services, CHARGE NOW for charging, FREE NOW for taxi ride-hailing, PARK NOW for parking and SHARE NOW for car-sharing.

HERE Cellular Signals Map

HERE Technologies, a global leader in mapping and location platform services,  announced HERE Cellular Signals, a unique data set that provides up-to-date information about mobile network performance on roads across 196 countries.

Cellular Signals provides a snapshot of network coverage, carriers, signal strength and radio network type. Signal strength is represented as Excellent, Good, Fair or Poor. This information can help cellular carriers monitor the performance of their own network, conduct competitive analyses to identify areas of relative strength and weakness, and make more informed network planning decisions.

For its radio map, HERE processes aggregated cell and Wi-Fi traces and GPS coordinates from more than 250 million connected devices globally that utilize HERE network positioning technology. HERE network positioning technology helps a device locate itself based on which cellular and Wi-Fi networks are in range of the device and how strong each signal is. By aggregating this information, HERE has created a vast map of the world’s radio environment.

The radio map is updated on average more than 100 million times a day through cellular-based updates alone. The high data volume enables increased positioning accuracy across every type of road, including minor residential and rural roads. HERE applies cloud-based machine learning to identify outliers and anomalies in the crowdsourced data and ensure high data quality.

HERE offers the HERE Cellular Networks data set to customers in FGDB (File Geodatabase) format.s.

Kelzal Ultra-Low Power

Kelzal, a San Diego-based startup developing novel neural networks and vision sensor technology, today announced its seed financing and commercialization strategy for its new product line — the Ultra-Low Power and Ultra-Fast Perception Appliances™. The vast majority of camera sensors are frame-based. AI engineers pair these cameras with convolutional neural networks to achieve perception solutions that can identify and classify objects such as people and vehicles. This combination requires extremely expensive and power hungry CPUs/GPUs while yielding slow response times – unacceptable for edge intelligence. The Kelzal event-based vision devices combined with third generation neural networks offers fast low power perception – well suited for mobile robots and surveillance applications in remote locations. The company is backed by $3 million of seed financing led by Motus Ventures.

Kelzal’s core technology is an “event-based” sensor that only tracks changes in a scene — all that’s needed to assess a situation for critical imaging. The appliances allow for rapid decision making at 100x the frame rate of a camera, while transmitting less data.

AEye Expands Portfolio

Artificial perception pioneer AEye today announced a significant expansion of its global patent portfolio, demonstrating its ongoing commitment to innovative solutions that promote safe and reliable vehicle autonomy. In addition to three patents previously announced, AEye has been awarded eight additional patents covering core components of AEye’s iDAR™ (Intelligent Detection and Ranging) perception system, including its solid-state MEMs-based agile LiDAR, fused HD camera, and software definable AI technology.

Six of the new patents relate to iDAR’s unique ability to enable software-defined frames and dynamic scan patterns. iDAR eliminates the constraints of the typical static point cloud by introducing dynamic scan modes designed to improve information acuity and minimize latency. With iDAR, scan modes can be combined and their data aggregated, enabling an AEye iDAR-powered device to be configured according to situational demands, such as when a vehicle moving at speed encounters congestion. This results in improved perception and time-to-reaction, while significantly reducing resource overhead.

Two of AEye’s recent patents focus on how the iDAR platform monitors and manages the laser energy of its agile LiDAR. iDAR deploys adaptive energy control on a pulse-by-pulse basis, allowing the system to automatically adjust the energy, tuning and shaping of each laser pulse. This advanced architecture allows for both the dynamic adjustment of scan patterns and the ability to adapt the laser energy for each pulse — enabling complete interference mitigation, eye safety and retro mitigation.

AEye recently announced the AE110 for the mobility applications and the AE200 for ADAS solutions. The features enabled by the technologies covered in these patents will be available in both product lines.

Spirent Test Platform

Spirent Communications plc (LSE:SPT), a leading provider of connected car and automotive Ethernet test solutions, today announced the launch of Spirent Automotive ComTT, the first universal test platform for the validation of Multibus technologies for in-vehicle networks.

At present, engineers utilize two different test platforms, one for traditional bus technologies and one for Ethernet network testing in order to perform full validation of electronic control units (ECUs) and gateways. Spirent Automotive ComTT is the first platform to combine both test methodologies in one device supporting multiple test systems.

Renesas CUPS

Renesas Electronics Corporation (TSE: 6723), a premier supplier of advanced semiconductor solutions, announced the development and successful operation verification of an automotive test chip as a technological stepping stone toward the realization of next-generation automotive-control flash Microcontrollers (MCUs) employing a 28 nanometer (nm) low-power process.

The MCU features four 600 megahertz (MHz) CPUs with a lock-step mechanism and a large 16 MB flash memory capacity, as well as:

  • Virtualization-assisted functions enabling MCU virtualization: This technology allows multiple software components to run on a single MCU without interfering with each other, thereby satisfying the requirements of ASIL D, the highest automotive safety integrity level specified under the ISO 26262 functional safety standard for road vehicles.
  • Enhanced built-in self-test (BIST) functionality for MCU self-diagnostic fault-detection necessary to implement ASIL D, thanks to a newly developed standby-resume BIST (SR-BIST) function that is executed during the standby-resume period.
  • Enhanced networking functionality, including Gigabit Ethernet interface for high-speed transfer of sensor information.

ANSYS Twin Builder

ANSYS is enabling product developers to potentially save millions of dollars in warranty and operational costs with the latest release of ANSYS® Twin Builder™. The comprehensive solution empowers users to provide seamless preventive maintenance for operational field assets while enabling the creation of new business models and accelerating next generation product development.

ANSYS Twin Builder enables equipment operators to create a virtual representation – a digital twin – of machines that helps monitor performance and maintenance requirements, improving the machine’s sustainability and efficiency. At ANSYS 2019 R1, ANSYS Twin Builder supports digital twin runtime generation capabilities and model export for industrial internet of things platforms. The update empowers users to unlock actionable insights from field asset data through the use of physics and simulation-based analytics.

On Studio design support tool

ON Semiconductor ), driving energy efficient innovations, will be exhibiting its newly-launched Strata Developer Studio design support tool at the Embedded World 2019 Exhibition and Conference in Nuremberg. Alongside this will be a number of on-booth technology demonstrations centered on the company’s solutions for the Internet of Things (IoT) targeting building automation, smart homes, consumer, and Industry 4.0. Advanced imaging sensing for next generation automotive applications and machine vision will also be on show to provide visitors with an interactive view of ON Semiconductor’s technologies and system solutions.

The Strata Developer Studio, complete with newly added power systems, will be demonstrated on the booth during the show. The exciting cloud-connected development environment for product evaluation and design offers a unique proposition and makes it quicker and easier for engineers to work with evaluation and development boards. Strata provides a trusted, always-up-to-date source for documentation, product information, design and application notes, reference designs and other critical project information. The new software environment equips engineers with an automated, cloud-connected solution that acts as an advanced ‘sandbox’ to explore, evaluate and design using ON Semiconductor’s technologies.

Synopsys SoCs

Synopsys, Inc. and GLOBALFOUNDRIES (GF) today announced a collaboration to develop a portfolio of automotive Grade 1 temperature (-40ºC to +150ºC junction) DesignWare® Foundation, Analog, and Interface IP for the GF 22-nanometer (nm) Fully-Depleted Silicon-On-Insulator (22FDX®) process. By providing IP that is designed for high-temperature operation on 22FDX, Synopsys enables designers to reduce their design effort and accelerate AEC-Q100 qualification of system-on-chips (SoCs) for automotive applications such as eMobility, 5G connectivity, advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), and infotainment. The Synopsys DesignWare IP implements additional automotive design rules for the GF 22FDX process to meet stringent reliability and operation requirements. This latest collaboration complements Synopsys’ broad portfolio of automotive-grade IP that provides ISO 26262 ASIL B Ready or ASIL D Ready certification, AEC-Q100 testing, and quality management.

MediaTek and Autotalks

MediaTek , a global fabless semiconductor company that enables 1.5 billion connected devices a year, and Autotalks, a world leader in V2X (Vehicle to Everything) communication solutions, are cooperating on integrating V2X and telematics. As part of the cooperation, the two companies have completed a joint reference design for Telematics Control Unit (TCU) integrated with a global V2X chipset. The reference design is based on Autotalks’ global V2X chipset and MediaTek’s newest technology, an automotive-grade cellular modem SoC, enabling a secure, robust and cost-effective global TCU architecture.

The joint design can serve as a reference to car-makers and Tier-1s for an optimal, cybersecure and flexible telematics unit integrated with physically isolated global V2X chipset to ensure domain separation between safety (V2X) and Telematics (Vehicle to Network – V2N) domains

Weather Telematics Preditiv RC

Weather Telematics Inc. has introduced Predictiv RC, the industry-leading advanced micro-scale road conditions platform for safer mobility. Predictiv RC provides unsurpassed accuracy in assessing and managing risks associated with driving in poor road weather conditions. This is a critical solution necessary for the burgeoning autonomous and electric vehicle markets.

Predictiv RC is WTX’s updated global platform that delivers “micro-scale” mapping resolution, ranging from 500 meters to below 200 meters. This unique feature enables Weather Telematics to improve the safety of current connected and electric vehicles while providing the essential data needed to operate autonomous vehicles in all weather conditions.

The platform’s APIs provide historical, current and predictive road weather conditions (dry, wet, snowy, icy) and road weather hazards, including hydroplaning, wind, visibility, hail and lightning. Predictiv RC enables vehicles to navigate safely in dangerous road conditions, predicting conditions 6-hours in advance on any route, with more than 90% accuracy.

For autonomous vehicle OEMs and automotive Tier 1 suppliers, WTX’s Predictiv RC platform assists vehicles’ management of adverse road conditions for safer driving, while predicting road weather conditions ahead of the vehicle to ensure safer route selection.

For electric vehicle manufacturers, Predictiv RC provides essential data needed to accurately assess the battery life, especially in extreme cold and hot weather conditionsIn order to provide more flexibility in how to use safety microcontrollers in automotive and industrial applications.

Infinenon & Xilinx

Infineon Technologies AG (FSE: IFX / OTCQX: IFNNY) cooperates with Xilinx Inc. and Xylon, d.o.o.. At the Embedded World trade fair 2019, they present a new Xylon IP core called logiHSSL. It enables high-speed communication between Infineon’s AURIX™ TC2xx and TC3xx microcontrollers and Xilinx’ SoC, MPSoC and FPGA devices via the Infineon High Speed Serial Link (HSSL). This serial link supports baudrates of up to 320 Mbaud at a net payload data-rate of up to 84%.

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