Connected Car News: Infineon, VIVA Links, Schaeffler, Powersys, Subaru, Dell, Falken, Sumitomo, Bridgestone, Bosch, Volvo, Microsoft & Panasonic.

In connected car news are Infineon, VIVA Links, Schaeffler, Powersys, Subaru, Dell, Falken, Sumitomo, Bridgestone, Bosch, Volvo, Microsoft and Panasonic.

Infineon Automotive PSoC 4100S Max

Infineon Technologies AG has launched the new Automotive PSoC™ 4100S Max family. This microcontroller device family expands Infineon’s portfolio of CAPSENSE™ enabled Human Machine Interface (HMI) solutions for automotive body/HVAC and steering wheel applications by delivering higher flash densities, GPIOs, CAN-FD, and HW-Security.

The Automotive PSoC 4100S Max with fifth generation CAPSENSE technology offering 10x higher sensitivity is available in 100-TQFP (14×14 mm²), 64-TQFP (10×10 mm²) and 48-QFN (7×7 mm²) packages. It is an optimal solution for automotive HMI applications requiring low-power consumption, multiple sensing pins (50+), configurable scan times to optimize the system’s refresh rate, high-speed communication (CAN-FD, I 2C), and dedicated HW-cryptography for enhanced security while offloading the main CPU. This device offers up to 84 GPIOs and 384 KB of flash memory (the largest PSoC4 flash memory in its class).

The Automotive PSoC 4100S Max is AECQ-100 qualified up to 125 °C ambient temperature and also provides support towards ASIL-B (ISO 26262-ready), which helps the integrator to achieve system level compliance for automotive application supported by Infineon’s latest ModusToolbox™ development platform, the devices allow developers an easy implementation for a variety of use cases.

VIVA Links Multi-Gigabit Ethernet

VIVA Links, Inc., the automotive company delivering the world’s most advanced multi-Gigabit vehicle infrastructure for AI and ADAS systems, t announced the industry’s first family of multi-Gigabit asymmetrical Ethernet devices based on the Automotive SerDes Alliance Motion Link Ethernet (ASA-MLE) draft specification. The new products include Ethernet PHYs, Switches, CSI-2 bridge ICs and Zonal Aggregators, all of which are optimized for the ultra-high bandwidth asymmetric video and control links. These devices are designed as coherent components of critical infrastructure for the next generation of intelligent Software Defined Vehicles (SDVs).

AVIVA will showcase its robust portfolio of multi-Gigabit asymmetrical Ethernet devices at Automotive Ethernet Congress (AEC) in booth C7 taking place in Munich, Germany from March 6-7, 2024.

The automotive industry is rapidly moving from legacy domain controller-based architecture to centralized compute architecture, accompanied by a transition from point-to-point (P2P) topologies to zonal topologies that dramatically improve the wiring harness. AVIVA’s family of asymmetrical Ethernet devices enable significant reduction in complexity, weight (several kilograms) and cost of the wiring harnesses, while delivering new features such as time-stamp based precise synchronization, ultra-low latency, low power consumption and state-of-the-art security.

“AVIVA introduced the world’s first 16G standardized SerDes which set the bar for the industry last year. With this announcement of the world’s first asymmetrical Ethernet solutions, we have extended our technology leadership even further,” said Kamal Dalmia, CEO and co-founder at AVIVA. “These new products will allow our customers to achieve unprecedented levels of performance, cost and architectural advantages.”

Multi-Gigabit Ethernet Devices

AVIVA’s new portfolio includes devices that perform functions ranging from MIPI bridging inside sensors and vehicle computers to switching and aggregation in zonal controller units. The portfolio includes the following products:

MIPI Bridges

  • Single-port 10G Ethernet to MIPI CSI-2 Bridge
  • Dual-port 10G Ethernet to MIPI CSI-2 Bridge
  • Quad-port 10G Ethernet to MIPI CSI-2 Bridge


  • 100G Ethernet Switch
  • 100G Ethernet Switch with MIPI CSI-2 Bridge

Zonal Aggregator

  • 3-to-1 Zonal Aggregator


  • Single-port 10G/5G/2.5G Ethernet PHY
  • Dual-port 10G/5G/2.5G Ethernet PHY

These devices are now sampling to Tier 1 and OEM customers and expected to be available in production quantities during the coming year.

Schaeffler Enters US Market with Factory in Ohio

Global motion technology company Schaeffler announces the expansion of its operations in the U.S. with the addition of a new manufacturing facility focused on producing automotive electric mobility solutions. This announcement represents the company’s commitment to innovation and growth in the Americas region.

Schaeffler is investing over USD 230 million in building the new greenfield manufacturing facility, strategically located in Dover, Ohio, as well as future expansions in the state until 2032. As part of an agreement with the State of Ohio and JobsOhio, the company will receive incentives via grants and tax credits for these investments that will create 650 jobs in the state. These jobs will lead to growth at the company’s current facility in Wooster, Ohio, and the new manufacturing facility in Dover.

Construction of the new facility will begin in mid-2024 with an estimated completion in the third quarter of 2025. Once complete, the first phase of the facility will boast roughly 130,000 square feet of advanced manufacturing space dedicated to electric mobility solutions for the automotive industry. Products manufactured at this site will include electric axles for light and medium-duty vehicles.

“Our new plant will play a pivotal role in shaping our future in the Americas region,” said Marc McGrath, Chief Executive Officer of Schaeffler Americas. “Dedicated to advancing our innovative product offering, our new Dover, Ohio facility will feature state-of-the-art production processes so we can better serve our customers, while also adopting sustainable practices, as we continue to pioneer motion,” continued McGrath.

The new facility will produce products with cutting-edge technology, featuring Schaeffler-designed and manufactured tools and equipment. The products include electric axles, showcasing Schaeffler’s dedication to delivering sustainable and efficient high-performance solutions for the rapidly evolving electric vehicle market. Beyond innovation, sustainability is at the core of Schaeffler’s operations. The new facility will incorporate eco-friendly practices, aligning with the company’s commitment to environmental responsibility and to be climate neutral by 2040.

Serving the Dover Community – Committed to Ohio
The new manufacturing facility location is in the proximity of Schaeffler’s customers, major automotive OEMs, strategic suppliers, rail, access to highways and to the company’s Wooster facility, which specializes in the manufacturing of transmission systems and serves as an innovation hub for automotive electric mobility.

The new facility will create approximately 450 job opportunities by 2032. Positions include manufacturing operators (assembly, welding and CNC), material handlers, manufacturing leaders, engineers, maintenance technicians, tooling technicians, quality professionals and other support staff.

Schaeffler is committed to fostering innovation and expertise and investing in the next generation of manufacturing. Partnerships with local technical colleges will ensure a robust talent pipeline and provide the community both apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship opportunities to be part of the future of electric mobility.

For more than 40 years, Schaeffler has considered the State of Ohio a vital partner. The company has relied on the state’s talented and committed workforce to keep its original equipment and aftermarket facilities operating smoothly and the quality of its products at the highest level.

Schaeffler strives to be a strong, contributing corporate citizen in each of the communities it operates, and looks forward to developing a positive relationship with the City of Dover and Tuscarawas County. As part of its commitment to Ohio, Schaeffler recently completed an expansion in Wooster of almost 90,000 square feet to produce electric motors and components for electric powertrain systems. Schaeffler also announced an increased relationship with The Ohio State University (OSU) to create a new battery cell research and development center that will open in 2025.

Schaeffler will plan a groundbreaking event later this year to commemorate the start of construction at its future site. More information on this event will be available in the near future.

Powersys New SIMBA

After two years of intensive development, Powersys is proud to unveil the newest version of SIMBA, setting a new standard as the fastest power electronics simulation software available.

Simba offers unparalleled capabilities for modeling, analysis, and optimization of power converters.

Its advanced multicore architecture dramatically accelerates the design process for complex power electronic systems, from EV battery chargers to advanced electric drive systems.

“We are thrilled to introduce the newest version of Simba, which empowers power electronics teams to drive innovation in electric vehicle design,” said Olivier Toury, Founder and President of Powersys. “Simba’s exceptional multicores calculation speed, opens new approaches of power converters design based on large scale automated optimization, generating high quantity of high accuracy data. This unprecedented capability of massive simulation will revolutionize the way engineers approach electrification power converters design in the automotive industry.”

Key features of Simba include:

  • Unmatched Speed and Accuracy: Customers’ benchmarks have showcased SIMBA’s unique accuracy and calculation speed, with both ideal switching and detailed switching models.
  • Python Automation: The SIMBA Python library enhances simulation capabilities with advanced optimization algorithms, machine learning, and multicore calculations.
  • Multiphysics Modeling Tool: SIMBA’s library spans multiple domains – electrical, mechanical, magnetic, thermal, and control (including C/C++) components.
  • Integration Capabilities: Its API interface ensures smooth integration with other software suites, optimizing the design process for complex systems. SIMBA can run simulations with high fidelity JMAG RT models for motor drive applications.
  • User-Friendly Interface: Designed for ease of use, requiring minimal training.

Gilles Bonkoski, Chief Business Officer of Powersys, emphasized the company’s commitment to providing next-generation solutions for fully optimized electrical and electromagnetic systems design. “Our global team of experts collaborates closely to deliver cutting-edge technology and engineering expertise to our clients worldwide.”

Since its inception in 2002, Powersys has been at the forefront of enabling clients in designing robust, optimized electric components and systems for automotive, aviation, and charging infrastructure applications.

With a strategic presence in San Diego, CA, Powersys is poised to accelerate its development efforts and explore new opportunities in the rapidly evolving EV market.

About Powersys: Powersys is a global engineering powerhouse specializing in precision, quality, and cutting-edge technology solutions for Power Electronic and electromagnetic equipment design. It is the exclusive distributor of the JMAG software in EuropeNorth America and India. With a diverse team of experts worldwide, Powersys is dedicated to accelerating the electrification revolution across various industries.

Subaru, Dell & AI for Driver Assistance

Subaru Corporation is teaming with Dell Technologies (NYSE: DELL) to help improve driver safety through the powerful combination of AI and high-performance storage. The collaboration is indicative of AI’s profound impact on transforming one of the most common means of transportation, aiming to help make it safer for drivers, passengers and pedestrians.

“Subaru is driving massive innovation through data to give motorists an extra set of eyes and an extra foot on the brake while entrusting Dell Technologies to enable this journey as its AI development infrastructure,” said Arthur Lewis, president, Infrastructure Solutions Group, Dell Technologies. “As an AI-ready data platform, Dell PowerScale storage allows companies like Subaru to integrate, analyze and use data to deliver impactful insights that advance human progress and transform industries.”

Subaru can store, manage and use a vast amount of data to advance the development of its next-generation EyeSight Driver Assist Technology with the selection of Dell PowerScale network attached storage systems. Sold in more than 5.5-million EyeSight-equipped vehicles, today’s EyeSight Driver Assist Technology monitors traffic movement, optimizes cruise control and warns drivers if they sway outside their lane. PowerScale meets the increased IT demand for AI modeling and validation while helping customers easily scale capacity and performance wherever their data resides.

SUBARU Lab, the AI development base for Subaru established in 2020, can store approximately 1,000 times more files on Dell PowerScale systems than with previous platforms. Subaru now can improve AI image analysis by easily accessing stored files on PowerScale systems deployed in data centers across the SUBARU Lab and Tokyo offices, which wasn’t previously possible. The ability to scale and use data flexibly across locations has expanded the possibilities for business expansion.

“As a brand that has built its reputation on trust, we are constantly expanding AI development to increase the reliability in our vehicles while contributing to the greater good,” said Takashi Kanai, deputy chief of SUBARU Lab and manager of ADAS Development Department, PGM (Advanced Integrated System), Engineering Division. “While requirements for systems and storage are ever changing, we are confident that Dell PowerScale is up to the task as the underlying infrastructure for EyeSight Driver Assist Technology, allowing us to continue advancing our AI initiatives to improve driver safety.”

EyeSight is the world’s first system to use only stereo camera technology to provide driver assist features such as pre-collision braking, which detects not only cars but also pedestrians and motorcycles in the vehicle’s path, as well as adaptive cruise control.

With its superior recognition capabilities enabled by stereo camera technology, EyeSight has consistently received top ratings from independent agencies around the world and has significantly contributed to Subaru’s preventive safety performance over the years.

A study by Subaru, based on data from Japan’s Institute for Traffic Accident Research and Data Analysis (ITARDA), has shown that the accident rate of EyeSight-equipped vehicles in Japan is as low as 0.06%1.

Dell PowerScale, the world’s most flexible2, secure3 and efficientscale-out file storage system to help customers accelerate modern workloads like analytics and AI, allows SUBARU Lab to flexibly tier data to lower cost storage options across public, private or hybrid cloud environments. SUBARU Lab can also quickly search and retrieve data across these locations to drive AI still image analysis with the solution’s data visualization capability.

InductEV Partnerships

The advent of wireless charging in the commercial transport sector took a big step forward today with industry leader InductEV striking three new strategic partnerships. The company has reached agreements with Miller EV Solutions, Roush, and WB Engineers+Consultants to help accelerate the adoption of its high-power, on-route inductive charging technology and AI overlay for energy management.

Each company will provide InductEV with mechanical and electrical engineering services to ensure a one-stop shop design and deployment of InductEV wireless charging system to help meet growing demand from commercial fleet owners and operators, as well as intermodal facilities and ports.

“Commercial fleets are the biggest contributor to GHG emissions worldwide in transportation,” noted Barry Libert, chairman and CEO of InductEV. “We are therefore pleased to announce today three new strategic partners, all of which possess the technological know-how and services to help implement our vision for wireless EV charging in the commercial and industrial transport sectors. We look forward to working with them to reduce the carbon footprint of these fleets and, in doing so, create considerable cost savings for our customers.”

The three new partners are:

  • Miller EV Solutions will provide electrical infrastructure, prefabrication, installation, commissioning, and maintenance & service for InductEV’s in-ground charging systems and increase the quality and speed of the electric service, ensuring up to 99.9% uptime for customers. MEV will also be part of a turnkey solution with best-in-class system installation, resulting in considerable cost savings. 

  • Roush will provide supplemental integration engineering design and post-deployment servicing of vehicle assemblies to ensure continued operation and power delivery. The company’s size and scale enable the deployment of resources and service to fleets in days instead of weeks.

  • WB Engineers+Consultants will provide its expertise in electrical infrastructure engineering & design with specialized teams focused on vehicle charging, infrastructure design & civil engineering. It will be part of InductEV’s turnkey solution to onboard new customers, along with Miller Electric, to offer a one-stop shop for optimized charging system design and installation.

InductEV holds 18 patents with 23 pending for its technology. Its AI-managed, on-route wireless charging solution shifts EV charging to daytime use of renewables, thus reducing the need for large EV batteries, lowering vehicle costs, and eliminating the need for recycling by extending battery life by a factor of 4-8X. Inductive wireless charging also paves the way for the broad deployment of autonomous vehicles.

To date, InductEV has delivered over 1.5 GWh of energy to customers across the U.S. and the EU through its wireless charging network – the equivalent of saving 650 metric tons of CO2. The company also recently announced a strategic partnership with Detroit Manufacturing Systems, a large-scale U.S. assembly provider, which will bring DMS’s operational, manufacturing, quality-by-design, and supply chain expertise to InductEV allowing it to scale more quickly to meet customer demand.

Falken & Sumitomo New Simulation

Falken Tyre’s parent company, Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Ltd. has developed a new simulation technique called “Tyre Aerodynamic Simulation” for use in EV tyre development. To reduce energy consumption and increase the range of EVs, it is important to minimise both rolling resistance as well as air resistance around the tyre. Sumitomo will pursue the development of a tyre profile that optimises aerodynamic performance. By visualising the airflow around the tyre of a moving vehicle through its own AI powered simulation, Sumitomo will use the findings to develop a low energy consumption next-generation tyre to be launched in 2027.

In addition to measures already taken to reduce tyre rolling resistance, Sumitomo will increase its focus on reducing air resistance, which is important to lower the energy consumption of an EV tyre. With a rapid shift to EVs occurring today, the impact of air resistance is becoming increasingly important. Unlike internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles, which lose over 50 percent of their energy due to heat, EVs suffer much less energy loss from heat. This means that air resistance accounts for a larger portion of the total energy loss. On a passenger car, the tyres are exposed to the air that passes around the tyres and flows out to the side and underside. As a result, 20 to 25 percent of the energy loss due to air resistance in a passenger car is related to the tyres. In EVs, which have almost no energy loss due to heat, around 34 to 37 percent of the energy loss is attributed to the tyres, when rolling resistance is included.

The newly-developed ‘Tyre Aerodynamic Simulation’ is a AI-powered tool that allows Sumitomo’e engineers to visualise air resistance around a tyre. It uses actual vehicle data to calculate the aerodynamics of a rotating tyre while simulating the tyre pattern and analysing results using AI. Tyre Aerodynamic Simulation also accounts for the effect of tyre deflection due to vehicle weight. Looking for every gain, it has developed a simulation that optimises the shape of the lettering and fine texture on the sidewall while they are rotating. While it is important to have a smooth sidewall to reduce air resistance on EVs, Tyre Aerodynamic will enable the development of a tyre that achieves both design and aerodynamic performance targets.

Having used the results of a wind tunnel experiment to confirm the accuracy of the simulation, the new EV tyre concept, with a decreased airflow behind the tyre and greater evenness on the sidewall resulted in lower air resistance values than a standard tyre. This confirmed the potential of the technology. Furthermore, the AI technology used in the simulation suggests that the sidewall plays a crucial role in air resistance reduction when the air resistance is higher, offering additional evidence of the effectiveness of the technology. Adopting this technique yields improved tyre performance with maximised aerodynamic characteristics, leading to reduced aerodynamic drag and energy consumption.

Sumitomo unveiled its own unique Circular Economy Concept for the tyre Industry, known as TOWANOWA, in March 2023. TOWANOWA features a two-ring structure, with a ‘Sustainable Ring’ comprising five processes in the value chain and a ‘Data Ring’ linking big data collected from each process. Sumitomo aims to create new value by sharing/using data between the two rings.

The newly developed Tyre Aerodynamic Simulation technique will use simulation data obtained through the ‘Planning & Design’ process to reduce air resistance when the vehicle is running and thereby help lower EV energy consumption. Through TOWANOWA, the Sumitomo Rubber Group will further accelerate its efforts to promote and practice ESG Management and contribute to the achievement of carbon neutrality by 2050 and the development of a sustainable society.

Bridgestone & Bosch for Fleets

Bridgestone Mobility Solutions is collab­or­ating with Bosch, a leading global supplier of technology and services, to offer integrated mobility services to their fleet customers.

Bridgestone Mobility Solutions is the business of Bridgestone, focused on data-driven mobility solutions including Europe’s leading fleet management solution Webfleet.

As part of the collab­or­ation, Webfleet joins Bosch’s Logistics Operating System L.OS, to offer additional solutions seamlessly integrated into the Webfleet fleet management platform.

The goal is to intel­li­gently connect different services and systems into a uniform solution to empower businesses to run their fleets more efficiently based on real-time data.

As a first use case, Bosch Secure Truck Parking, a leading European booking platform for secure truck parking, will integrate into the Webfleet fleet management solution via Bosch L.OS.

The digital solution will allow fleets to quickly and easily plan and book secure parking spaces across a network of verified parking lots, minimising cargo theft risk and prior­it­ising driver well-being. The solution also helps to reduce fuel costs and CO2 emissions from time wasted searching for a parking space.

Customers will gain access to Bosch Secure Truck Parking, directly within the Webfleet fleet management platform. The ambition is for dispatchers to also get recom­mend­a­tions for available parking spaces, based on remaining driving time and order schedule, to prevent drivers from exceeding legal driving times and improve planning.

Moreover, ETAs will be calculated and commu­nicated even more precisely depending on the current traffic situation. All secure parking booking details can be automat­ically shared with drivers via Webfleet’s dedicated driver app and terminals.

We are thrilled to join the Bosch L.OS platform, said Taco van der Leij, Vice President Webfleet Europe at Bridgestone Mobility Solutions. With this collab­or­ation, we are bringing together two powerful entities in the mobility landscape to address critical challenges for fleet businesses.

The Secure Truck Parking solution is just the beginning of our collab­or­ation; we are committed to providing more and more impactful features and innovative solutions to meet the evolving needs of our customers.

Webfleet and Bosch L.OS plan to evaluate the integrated Secure Truck Parking offering with a select group of customers starting in spring 2024. This initial phase will allow product experts from both partners to gather feedback and explore other potential value-added features, before a broader rollout.

Through this partnership, Webfleet continues to expand its partner ecosystem, offering fleets unpar­alleled access to cutting-edge techno­logies that empower them to operate more efficiently, safely and sustainably.

Volvo Intros Accident Ahead Alert

You’re driving down a winding country road. It’s impossible to see beyond the road in front of you. Suddenly, your Volvo car alerts you: there’s been an accident ahead. As you calmly decelerate and come around the next curve, you see a crashed car in your lane. Thanks to the warning, you were prepared and could react proactively.

With our new Accident Ahead Alert, we introduce another pioneering connected safety feature in Volvo cars: for the first time, cars can alert drivers of accidents ahead directly using real-time data from a traffic management centre. It will be available in compatible Volvo cars in Europe, starting from Denmark.

With the aim to help drivers avoid collisions and traffic congestion caused by an accident ahead, the feature is designed to instantly alert the driver about a traffic accident up to a few hundred metres ahead. The location data is provided by national road authorities and compatible cars, starting with other Volvo cars.


“Using our groundbreaking connected safety technology, our Accident Ahead Alert can help Volvo drivers avoid unpleasant surprises, while contributing to making roads safer for all,” says Åsa Haglund, head of Volvo Cars Safety Centre. “Thanks to our collaboration with the Danish Road Directorate and other partners in the Data for Road Safety ecosystem, we can introduce this new feature and continue our leadership in safety innovations.”

Volvo Cars’ industry-first connected safety technology, which was introduced in 2016, uses Volvo Cars’ cloud, based on real-time data. It allows Volvo cars to communicate with each other and alert drivers of nearby slippery road conditions and hazards. In the same way, drivers can now be alerted to accidents ahead regardless of the time of the day.

Looking ahead, we’re planning to integrate more traffic data shared by other partners in the European Data for Road Safety ecosystem, including national traffic management centres in other countries and cars from other brands.

To make roads safer for all, we call for more road authorities to share anonymous traffic accident data and encourage other car makers to join us in offering similar technologies. Needless to say, Volvo Cars has been commited to sharing connected safety data for others to integrate into safety features and will continue doing so.

“We’re happy that Volvo Cars as the first car maker has started using our new real-time traffic event data feed,” says Stine Bendsen, head of the Danish Traffic Management Centre at the Danish Road Directorate. “A quick alert about an accident ahead gives the driver more time to slow down and increase the distance to the car in front. This helps to lower the risk of follow-up collisions and protect the people working to clear the road.”

For Volvo car owners, it’s easy to contribute to road safety by opting for data sharing: simply activate it using the “connected safety” option in your car’s centre display. The car will then be able to alert the driver of an accident ahead by using the hazard light alert in the dashboard, and if available, the head-up display. Rest assured that only the essential information will be shared with other cars and the data will be anonymised to ensure your privacy.

Bosch & Microsoft AI for Driving

Bosch is pursuing the use of generative AI in terms to further improve automated driving functions. As part of this, Bosch and Microsoft are exploring opportunities to collaborate and leverage the power of generative AI. “Bosch is working on bringing a new dimension of AI applications into the vehicle,” said Dr. Stefan Hartung, chairman of the Bosch board of management, at this year’s Bosch Connected World (BCW) AIoT industry conference in Berlin. The expectation is that generative AI will enable vehicles to assess situations and react accordingly, and in this way keep road users even safer. Greater safety on the roads is also the wish of 60 percent of respondents to this year’s Bosch Tech Compass, a worldwide representative Bosch survey on the subjects of technology and AI.

Generative AI to make road traffic safer

The two companies anticipate that a collaboration would take the performance of automated driving functions to the next level. They would like to see generative AI help enhance convenience in the vehicle and to provide greater safety for all road users. To achieve this, Bosch’s comprehensive understanding of vehicles and automotive-specific AI expertise will be invaluable, as well as their access to vehicle sensor data to feed the generative AI. “In our unwavering commitment to safer roads, Microsoft is eager to explore collaboration opportunities with Bosch to pioneer the realm of generative AI,” said Uli Homann, Microsoft CVP and Distinguished Architect.

Even today, when it comes to training systems for automated driving, AI quickly comes up against its limits. Today’s driver assistance systems can detect people, animals, objects, and vehicles, but in the near future generative AI could help determine whether a situation could potentially lead to an accident. Generative AI utilizes vast amounts of data to train systems for automated driving, enabling them to draw improved conclusions from this data. For example, it could deduce whether an object on the road ahead is a plastic bag or a damaged vehicle part. This information can be used either to communicate directly with the driver – such as by displaying a warning – or to initiate appropriate driving maneuvers, such as braking while switching on the hazard warning lights.

Bosch and Microsoft have already partnered to develop a universal software platform for seamlessly connecting cars and the cloud, and are looking forward to work together to identify new opportunities to bring cutting-edge AI technology to their customers and the autonomous vehicle industry.

Generative AI as a boost to innovation

“Generative AI is a boost to innovation. It can transform industry in much the same way as the invention of the computer,” says Dr. Tanja Rueckert, member of the Bosch board of management and chief digital officer. The new 2024 Bosch Tech Compass shows this as well: 64 percent of respondents believe that AI is the technology with the greatest importance for the future. In comparison, only 41 percent of respondents were of the same opinion just one year ago.

“Generative AI is a boost to innovation. It can transform industry in much the same way as the invention of the computer,”
says Dr. Tanja Rueckert, member of the Bosch board of management and chief digital officer.

From manufacturing to everyday office work, generative AI is already being used in many areas at Bosch. In addition to Microsoft, the company is working with several partners, including AWS, Google, and Aleph Alpha. The Bosch Group’s venture capital unit, Bosch Ventures, invested in the AI company Aleph Alpha last year. Bosch also announced it would collaborate with the startup on finding new use cases both for Bosch associates and customers. “Bosch and Aleph Alpha want to learn from each other, benefit from each other’s know-how, and work together on cross-domain use cases,” Rueckert says. This partnership is now bearing its first fruits in North America: in collaboration with Aleph Alpha, Bosch is debuting AI-based speech recognition on behalf of a premium car manufacturer. In this solution, a chatbot understands and answers breakdown service calls with the help of natural language processing, which also recognizes dialects, accents, and moods. The call is taken directly, reducing the driver’s waiting time to a minimum. As many as 40 percent of calls can be processed and resolved automatically; for more complex queries, the bot transmits all relevant information to a service center agent who takes over the case immediately.

From the AI search engine to manufacturing

AI experts at Bosch are currently working on well over 120 specific applications that these new AI models open up for the company’s associates and customers. Such applications include the generation of software program code or powerful chatbots and voicebots to support technicians or interact with consumers. Another is AskBosch, the in-house AI-assisted search engine launched at the end of 2023. It offers faster natural-language access to a wide variety of data sources – sources scattered over the intranet, say. In addition to externally available data, AskBosch also includes internal data sources, so Bosch associates can research information specific to the company. Generative AI also ensures greater speed in manufacturing: in initial projects in two Bosch plants in Germany, generative AI creates synthetic images in order to develop and scale AI solutions for optical inspection and optimize existing AI models. Bosch expects that this will reduce the time needed for planning, launching, and ramping up AI applications from the current six-to-twelve months to just a few weeks. Following successful piloting, this service for generating synthetic data is to be offered to all Bosch locations.

2024 Bosch Tech Compass: setting the pace in the use of AI

As AI is used in more and more areas of life, professional development is becoming increasingly important: 58 percent of respondents to the Bosch Tech Compass are convinced of this. This opinion is particularly prevalent in USA at 63 percent (Germany: 54 percent, China: 52 percent). Here, too, Bosch is setting the pace in the use of artificial intelligence and is getting its associates on board. In 2019, Bosch launched a training program, initially aimed at bringing 30,000 associates up to speed on the subject of AI. Up to now, some 28,000 associates have taken part in the program. Like the Bosch AI code of ethics, which sets ethical guidelines for dealing with artificial intelligence, this program has been supplemented with content about generative AI.

For all the results of the 2024 Bosch Tech Compass, click here.

Panasonic Begins Production of ZL Capacitors

Panasonic Industry Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Minato-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director, President, CEO: Shinji Sakamoto) announced today that it has begun commercial production of its ZL series conductive polymer hybrid aluminum electrolytic capacitors. The series includes the industry’s first high-capacitance type models guaranteed to operate at 135°C. These capacitors have been developed for installation in electronic control units (ECUs)[1] for electric vehicles (now sometimes referred to as xEVs, a catchall for EVs and all their subtypes), including hybrids. Mass production is slated to begin in February 2024.

Conductive polymer hybrid aluminum electrolytic capacitors, characterized by high capacitance and high current, are responsible for reducing current noise and stabilizing circuit voltage in ECU power supply circuits, with more than 100 packs used in a typical xEV. They are key devices that are indispensable for the electrification and advanced digitization of vehicles. In recent years, ECUs mounted on vehicles have proliferated, and their power consumption has increased in step with vehicle electrification and the rise of autonomous driving. In particular, applications such as advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS)[2], electric power steering (EPS)[3], and automatic braking require a redundant design with two identical circuits installed in a vehicle to improve safety, resulting in a trend towards a further increase in the number of capacitors used per ECU. However, the limited space available for installation in the vehicle body requires ECUs to process high currents in a compact size, which increases the amount of heat generated within the ECU. Therefore, capacitors are required to not only be more heat-resistant but also smaller in form factor while offering more capacitance than ever before.

Panasonic Industry began mass producing conductive polymer hybrid aluminum electrolytic capacitors in 2012, and has led the way with industry-first products. Recently, the company has further evolved its proprietary electrolyte and high-precision electrode foil winding technology with a view to commercial production of the ZL series capacitors. With a lineup of five major sizes, these capacitors overcome circuit design restrictions through heat control measures and achieve a one rank smaller size than the company’s existing standard ZC series products without changing the capacitance.

Utilizing its proprietary device technology, Panasonic Industry will strive to contribute to enhancing the performance and reliability of electric vehicles and reduce equipment weight. This, in turn, will lead to improved fuel efficiency and contribute to decreased environmental impact by reducing the quantity of parts and materials used.

Panasonic’s automotive conductive polymer hybrid aluminum electrolytic capacitors have the following features:

1. Through Panasonic Industry’s new proprietary electrolyte technology, the company has achieved high-capacitance type capacitors*2 guaranteed to operate at 135°C, an industry first*1.
2. The ZL series capacitors come in five major sizes for automotive applications and have achieved the industry’s highest level*2 capacitance.
3. Saves space for capacitor mounting areas, contributing to a reduction in environmental impact through the miniaturization of ECUs and a decrease in the amount of parts and materials used.
*1 As of February 28, 2024, the industry’s highest capacitance models in five major sizes (ø5 x 5.8 to ø10 x 10.2) for automotive applications included in the conductive polymer hybrid aluminum capacitors are guaranteed to operate for 4,000 hours at 135°C (capacitors in sizes of ø5 and ø6 are guaranteed to operate for 2,000 hours at 135°C). (Panasonic Industry data)
*2 As of February 28, 2024, the industry’s highest capacitance models in five major sizes (ø5 x 5.8 to ø10 x 10.2) for automotive applications included in the conductive polymer hybrid aluminum capacitors (Panasonic Industry data)

Product features:
1. Through Panasonic Industry’s new proprietary electrolyte technology, the company has achieved high-capacitance type capacitors guaranteed to operate at 135°C, an industry first.
It is difficult to stabilize the characteristics of high-capacitance electrode foils in high-temperature environments, and there have been challenges in creating capacitors featuring both high capacitance and high heat resistance. Now, the Panasonic Industry has independently developed a new electrolyte that can stabilize electrode foil characteristics even in high-temperature environments by revising the material composition. By achieving a guaranteed operating temperature of 135°C, restrictions on circuit design due to thermal control measures can be overcome, even for high-capacitance type capacitors, leading to more compact ECUs.

2. The ZL series capacitors come in five major sizes for automotive applications and have achieved the industry’s highest level capacitance.
To miniaturize a capacitor while maintaining its capacitance, it is necessary to increase the capacitance of its internal electrode foils. However, high-capacitance electrode foils have lower strength than general electrode foils, making them difficult to manufacture and ensure reliability. Panasonic Industry has succeeded in the stable mass production of high-capacitance electrode foils through its proprietary high-precision foil winding technology that maximizes winding dimensions and through the evolution of uniform polymer formation technology. Consequently, the ZL series capacitors in five major sizes have achieved the industry’s highest level capacitance, which is more than 1.7 times that of the company’s existing standard ZC series products. ZL series capacitors achieve the same performance in a smaller size compared to ZC series capacitors.

[ZC series sizes and comparable ZL series sizes (for 35 V rated)]
image: ZC series sizes and comparable ZL series sizes (for 35 V rated)

3. Saves space for capacitor mounting areas, contributing to a reduction in environmental impact through the miniaturization of ECUs and a decrease in the amount of parts and materials used.
For the desired capacitance, the ZL series offers capacitors in a size one rank smaller than the Panasonic Industry’s existing standard ZC series products and achieves a reduction in the number of capacitors used. This saves space for capacitor mounting areas, contributing to a reduction in environmental impact through the miniaturization of equipment and a decrease in the number of parts and materials used.

Suitable applications:
Reduction of ripple current[4] and stabilization of voltage of DC/DC power supplies in ECUs, such as for ADAS, zone control units (ZCUs)[5], and engines
Reduction of ripple current in control system circuits of inverters for driving EPS, pumps, compressors, and motors
Basic specifications:
Lifetime: Guaranteed to operate for 4,000 hours at 125°C, 4,000 hours at 135°C (guaranteed to operate for 2,000 hours at 135°C for capacitors with sizes of ø5 and ø6.3)
Temperature range: -55°C to 135°C
Ripple current: 100 kHz, 125°C/135°C
ESR: 100 kHz, 20°C
image:Basic specifications

* Capacitors in sizes equal to or larger than ø6.3 can support vibration-resistant specifications (available sizes: ø6.3 x 6.1, ø6.3 x 8.0, ø8 x 10.5, ø10 x 10.5)

SOURCE: Panasonic