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    Flexing its technology muscles, TI plays a strong hand in automotive radar

    Sensor portfolio addresses long range, short range and in-vehicle applications

    By Patrick Mannion | June 23, 2017

    By integrating a variety of RF, analog and digital components (including DSP and MCU) onto a single CMOS chip, Texas Instruments has staked a claim to all automotive radar applications, both outside and inside the vehicle.

    Primary automotive radar applications can be broadly grouped into corner radars and front radars. Corner radars (rear and front) are typically short-range radar sensors that can be used for blind-spot detection (BSD), lane-change assist (LCA) and front/rear cross-traffic alert (F/RCTA), while front radars are typically mid- and long-range radars responsible for autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and adaptive cruise control (ACC).

    Beyond Silicon

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      Which is better? SiC or GaN?

      Proper device selection ensures optimal performance

      By Alix Paultre | June 17, 2017

       

      It is all well and good to point out that wide-bandgap materials like silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN) are superior performers to legacy silicon, but what does that really mean to the designer? What application spaces can best benefit from the next generation of semiconductors? There is a difference between frequency-oriented applications like RF and LiDAR and energy-oriented applications like power electronics; wide-bandgap devices, properly chosen, can serve both well.

      The Connected Automobile

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        V2X communications: A pointless wait for 5G?

        DSRC is here, now, and could be saving lives

        June 12, 2017

        V2X communications — the ability of a vehicle to communicate with another, or with ambient infrastructure – could vastly enhance transportation safety if deployed on a mass scale. But it remains an unfulfilled dream because there isn’t a universal agreement on communications protocols.

        There are two leading contenders for such a communications standard: Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC) and Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-V2X) technology that leverages the commercial cellular network and field equipment managed by Mobile Network Operators (MNOs)

        The 5G Automotive Association (5GAA), whose founding members include Ericsson, Intel, Huawei, Nokia, Qualcomm, Audi, BMW Group and Daimler AG, is lobbying for C-V2X, claiming superior capabilities over DSRC, on more than one front.

        Electrification

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          Renault to sell electricity from recycled EV batteries

          Creating a market for used power cells

          June 11, 2017

          Renault-Nissan, the strategic partnership between France’s automobile manufacturer Renault and Japan’s Nissan, is working with energy storage specialist The Mobility House to develop a ‘mega battery’ built from new or used electric car batteries. The move has the potential to effectively reduce the ownership cost of electric vehicles (EV) by creating a secondary recycling market for used lithium-ion batteries that might otherwise be scrapped.

          Beyond Silicon

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            What is the difference between GaN and SiC?

            Each material has its pluses and minuses

            By Alix Paultre | June 5, 2017

            Characteristics of SiC, GaN and Silicon

            The wide-bandgap revolution is still in its infancy, but we have finally reached the point where promise is being followed by product. Every major embedded manufacturer now has a wide-bandgap play, if only to demonstrate to the marketplace that they are players. Partnerships between the technology developers and mainstream semiconductor companies are coupling disruptive tech with trusted sources to ease migration pains.

            Beyond Silicon

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              Why use wide-bandgap semiconductors?

              They're not one-for-one replacements for silicon

              By Alix Paultre | June 1, 2017

              Packaging is a critical issue in wide-bandgap semiconductor development.

              Buzz about the promise of wide-bandgap semiconductors abounds, but engineers are only just starting to look to them as real solutions, not mere hype. There are still birthing pains, but mainstream acceptance of the technology appears imminent.

              Still, it is relevant to ask why wide-bandgap is such a disruptive technology.

              Efficiency: The First Fuel

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                Germany hits record production in renewable energy marathon

                In record-breaking weekend, Germany got 85% of its electricity from renewable energy sources

                May 30, 2017

                The sports world is driven by athletes relentlessly driven to deliver their personal best, no matter what the contest.

                Generating renewable energy is reaching a similar level of competitiveness among conservation-minded nations. Witness Germany’s setting of a national record in renewable energy production on a recent weekend in which 85 percent of all electricity consumed was produced through wind, solar, biomass, and hydroelectric power.

                Electrification

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                  The powertrain opportunity is reshaping relationships between chipmakers and their automotive customers

                  Emerging? An integrated, compact power train – including power electronics

                  By Christoph Hammerschmidt | May 26, 2017

                  The electrification of the powertrain – at all levels — is a bonanza for semiconductor companies. From micro hybrids, where 48 V systems are accommodating the need for more on-board power, to all-electric vehicles with batteries capable of delivering many hundreds of volts, semiconductors play a vital role.

                  On average, cars with conventional internal combustion engines today contain semiconductors worth some $350.