Auto Electronics

Low-Cost, 64-TAP, One-Time Programmable Digital Potentiometer


MAXIM INTEGRATED PRODUCTS has introduced the MAX5527/MAX5528/MAX5529, low-cost, 64-tap, one-time-programmable digital potentiometers in eight-pin, 3mm × 3mm TDFN or microMAX(R) packages. The one-time use-programmable feature sets the power-on position of the wiper, enabling these devices to power up to a unique predefined state. These digital posts offer ratiometric and end-to-end temperature coefficients as low as 5ppm/°C and 35ppm/°C. The devices are guaranteed over the -40 °C to +105 °C operating temperature range.

The MAX5527/MAX5528/MAX5529 saves power by requiring less than 1.5 microamps in standby mode and operating from a +2.7 V to +5.5 V single supply. End-to-end resistances of 10 kilOhms, 50 kilOhms, and 100 kilOhms are available. An up/down two-wire serial interface makes these new digital pots simple to operate.

Prices start at $0.70 (1000-up, FOB USA).
Maxim Integrated Products • (800)


The LTC3780 from Linear Technology Corporation is a high-performance buck-boost switching regulator controller, suited for automotive applications, which operate from input voltages above, below or equal to the output voltage. It offers three operating modes — constant frequency, burst mode and discontinuous current.

With a single inductor, the LTC3780 can deliver output power as high as 75 W, and four-switch synchronous rectification delivers efficiencies up to 97%. The constant frequency current mode architecture allows a phase-lockable frequency of up to 400 kHz. The controller's input range is 4 V to 30 V (36 V max). Its output range is 0.8 V to 30 V.

The device uses a proprietary current control architecture for constant frequency operation in buck or boost mode. Fault protection is provided for overvoltage, overcurrent and short-circuit conditions in all operating modes. A power good output open-drain pin signals whether the output voltage is in or out of regulation.
Linear Technology • (408)


Sony Ericsson has added the GA64 to its M2M (machine-to-machine) line of quad-band, GSM/GPRS radio devices. Based on the GX64 Family Core, the GA64 is designed to meet regulatory and industrial requirements for automotive, fleet and industrial devices.

Features include USB functionality, onboard Bluetooth and GPS technology, a TCP/IP kernel for increased power, an onboard SIM cardholder, and low-loss RF connectors. The device is also said to be less than half the size of its predecessor.
Sony Ericsson • (866)


KEMET Corporation has added high capacitance offerings to its commercial X7R line of ceramic surface-mount devices. New releases offer capacitance ranges from 0.012 microfarads to 10 microfarads in 0402, 0603, 0805 and 1206 EIA case sizes at rated voltages of 6.3 V, 10 V and 16 V. The capacitors provide circuit functions such as decoupling and output filtering in automotive market segments.

The newest capacitance values are available in the X7R dielectric and in K (+/-10%) and M (+/-20%) tolerances. All parts comply with RoHS legislation.
KEMET • (864)


Delphi Corp. will offer ignition wire sets to the independent aftermarket, with 42 part numbers available to cover 20% of the vehicles in North America. The line will be complete by the third quarter.

Ignition cable materials can break down over time due to heat and contamination, with average industry replacement at 75,000 miles. Each year, nearly 5% of all vehicles on the road will require a replacement wire set. Failed wire sets can cause rough idle, misfire under load, and poor fuel economy.

The ignition wire sets will be sold with original equipment boots, terminals and lead lengths, and will be configured in application-correct 7 mm or 8 mm cable sizes.
Delphi Corp. • (248)


Visteon Corporation claims to have one of the industry's first “road-worthy beam pattern” applications of LED front lighting, a capability it demonstrated on the Cadillac STS SAE 100 Technology Integration Vehicle at the SAE World Congress earlier this month.

Since LED lights use several sources rather than a single light source to achieve the required beam pattern, designers can arrange light sources to provide a unique differentiating appearance.

Visteon's approach includes unique optics and a new method of light source placement to direct the white light into a beam pattern that meets federal requirements for automotive front lighting.

Visteon's LED front lighting demonstration lamps are based on LED technology. LED front lights are up to 55% thinner than their non-LED counterparts, thus opening up space in the engine compartment or in the grille to add styling options.
Visteon Corp. • (800)


Atmel Corp. has introduced a local interface network (LIN) system basis chip, ATA6620, with 6 kV ESD protection and low current consumption. Current consumption can be further reduced by a silent mode function that is not available in most other LIN2.0 devices. Manufactured in Atmel's 0.8-micron BCDMOS process technology, the ATA6620 is optimized for operation at up to 40 V, and in harsh environments, including door modules, seat control or intelligent sensors.

The ATA6620 includes a fully integrated LIN2.0 transceiver and a 5 V voltage regulator. The device interfaces the LIN protocol handler and the LIN bus. Improved slope control at the LIN bus is said to ensure secure data communication at up to 20 kilobaud with a resistive-capacitive oscillator for protocol handling. To meet 42 V powernet requirements, the bus output can tolerate short circuits of up to 60 V.

Normal, silent and sleep operating modes are available. In silent mode the transmission path is disabled and the voltage regulator can supply a microcontroller in power-down mode. The system supply current is typically 40 microamperes in silent mode and 10 microamps in sleep mode.

Protection features include overtemperature shutdown, short circuit protection, and high-voltage-bus-line protection up to 60 V. It is compatible with 5 V devices, and includes a dominant time-out function to prevent the bus line from being driven permanently in dominant state. A wake-up feature is implemented via the LIN bus line. The device meets automotive qualification demands.
Atmel Corp. • (408)


Lamina Ceramics Inc. has launched a line of super-bright, high-power LED light engines featuring superior compatibility with emerging industry standards for drivers and optics. Smaller than a U.S. nickel, the round footprint of the Lamina BL-4000 series of 120-lumen light engines results in a less complex optic design, providing compatibility with a variety of luminaires.

Anchoring the BL-4000 series are an RGB (red-green-blue) light engine producing up to 16 million blended colors — including white with variable color temperature — and a 5,500 °K white-only light engine with a color rendition index (CRI) of 78. All are designed for drive currents, feature integrated protection from electrostatic discharge, an isolated metal base for wiring on a common heat sink in either series or parallel and compatibility with many LED optics.

The Lamina BL-4000 RGB+ LED array has independent input/output three-channel color connections for dynamic or preset display of colors, delivering 120 lumens of blended RGB light through additive mixing. A range of white color temperatures can also be produced. The RGB+ light engine has a red, green and blue LED die arranged for optimal color mixing within each light engine. The BL-4000 RGB+ features large solder pads. Lamina's EZConnect PCB adapter and heat sinks are available.

Lamina's LED arrays are manufactured by combining high brightness LEDs from LED manufacturers with Lamina's proprietary packaging technology, multilayer low temperature co-fired ceramic-on-metal (LTCC-M).
Lamina Ceramics Inc. • (800)


Fujitsu Microelectronics America Inc. (FMA) has released a FlexRay® evaluation kit, an FPGA-based development platform that enables the design and verification of hardware and software applications before production silicon is available.

The evaluation kit is the first product in which Fujitsu will use the FlexRay controller IP, which it licensed from Bosch. The kit consists of an FPGA board with the FlexRay communication controller, the physical layer, and an MCU starter kit equipped with the MB91369, a 32-bit FR50 core. Along with the hardware comes a software package featuring a communication stack, which meets series production requirements for evaluation purposes or prototype development of FlexRay products.

The modular design of the FPGA board assures that any updates in the protocol or physical layer specifications can be implemented quickly without the need for a redesign. The board, which has pre-installed RS-485 bus drivers, provides sockets that allow the addition of third-party plug-in modules with FlexRay-compliant drivers.

The MB91369 FR50 RISC core is built with a Harvard architecture featuring a five-stage pipeline with single-cycle instruction execution. The 32-bit parallel bus interface of the FR50 core allows rapid access to the FlexRay controller.
Fujitsu Microelectronics America Inc. • (800)


Analog Devices' AD8333 is a dual-channel I/Q demodulator and phase-shifter for CW Doppler ultrasound. The monolithic Doppler phase-shifter IC achieves a dynamic range of 161 dB/Hz, which is equal to or exceeds the dynamic range of existing multichip solutions, while using less than 25% of the board space per channel and delivering a per-channel bill of materials savings of up to 75%.

The AD8333 provides the same coherent summing and phase alignment of multiple input channels as competing products while consuming just 190 mW/channel and significantly reducing circuit board area.

CW Doppler ultrasound systems require ABF because the large dynamic range cannot be processed digitally. The dual-channel AD8333 significantly alters this approach by replacing it with a programmable phase-shifting technique with an I/Q demodulator for each input channel, eliminating the need for multiple analog delay lines and cross-point switches. The reduction in board space and low power allow for an increase in continuous wave functionality compared to the delay line approach.

The AD8333 is designed with 22.5 ° phase steps, allowing for accurate time alignment of multiple channels in continuous wave beam-forming applications. The amplifier offers parallel l4-bit digital control of phase states, and provides accurate channel matching through a common LO interface.

The AD8333 monolithic Doppler phase-shifter is sampling and will be in full production in August. The device is offered in a 5 mm × 5 mm LFCSP (lead-frame chip scale package) and is priced at $8.95 each in 1,000-unit quantities.
Analog Devices Inc. • (800)


Austriamicrosystems' AS5035 is an eight-bit incremental magnetic rotary encoder for cost-sensitive industrial and automotive applications. The device is well suited for use in human-machine interface (HMI) applications, such as front panel switches, or as an alternative to optical encoder-based applications where dust or other particles could severely diminish the reliability and accuracy of the system operation.

The AS5035 provides incremental quadrature A/B output signals and an index output signal. The index signal represents a mechanical reference point, called the zero position, which can be programmed by the user at the system assembly stage. Operation safety is ensured by continuous monitoring of the magnet presence and the optimal magnet position in the system.

The AS5035 is an encoder solution for cost-sensitive applications that have been using optical encoder solutions. Another key product feature is the ability to program the zero position at the system assembly stage.

The AS5035 provides 64 pulses per revolution on each of the two quadrature output channels, which equals a resolution of 1.4 ° per edge over a full turn of 360 °. Operation safety is ensured by a failure detection feature, which monitors the magnet's placement during the operation. In case of a missing or loose magnet, the device instantly provides a warning signal. The IC operates at rotational speeds up to 10,000 revolutions per minute, without missing any incremental pulses. The zero position can be programmed by the user. The AS5035 operates at either 3.3 V or 5 V. The operating temperature ranges from -40 °C to +125 °C. The AS5035 is available in a lead-free SSOP 16 (5.3 mm × 6.2 mm) package. The AS5035 is sampling now.
Austriamicrosystems • (919)


Catalyst Semiconductor Inc. has expanded its family of solid-state illumination products with the white LED driver targeted at LED indicator and interior lighting applications. The CAT310 drives up to 10 color or white LEDs and safely handles load-dump transients to 40 V, making it ideal for automotive systems.

A serial to parallel shift register accepts up to a 10-bit datastream, stores the state condition of each output channel, and upon command, latches the input data to enable, or disable, the outputs. This provides LED blanking and pattern control for signal indication in applications such as diagnostic tools or control panels. A serial output allows the user to cascade multiple CAT310 drivers to illuminate systems of LEDs in applications such as signboards or interior lighting systems.

Each channel is comprised of a low on-resistance open drain FET, which can sink up to 50 mA, with the current through each LED being set by a series resistor. Manufactured on high-voltage CMOS technology, the CAT310 operates with input voltages as high as 17 V. Overvoltage detection, undervoltage lockout and overcurrent detection each serve to protect the device and output LEDs during fault conditions.

The CAT310 offers a robust solution for driving multicolor LEDs across the full automotive temperature range of -40 °C to +125 °C, and in harsh system environments. The integrated suite of features reduces external component count and minimizes the traditional reliance on upstream protection devices.

The CAT310 is available in a 20-pin SOIC package and is priced at $0.95, in 1,000 piece quantities. The CAT310 is available in environment-friendly packages that are halogen- and lead-free with RoHS compliance. Samples and production quantities are available.
Catalyst Semiconductor Inc. • (408)


Freescale Semiconductor has introduced the MC33897 dual-wire CAN transceivers, which are used in high-speed and medium-speed applications with the goal of data transfer. In cost-sensitive applications, single-wire CAN solutions provide an adequate speed and cost alternative. The single-wire CAN transceivers allow the CAN protocol to be transmitted over one wire. The result is cost reduction for networks that don't require full, high-speed CAN transmissions. The eight-pin and 14-pin devices drop into the same board layout for cost savings and increased flexibility.

The MC33897 is designed in accordance with the General Motors Corporation GMW3089v2.3 single-wire CAN physical layer specification. The devices support low sleep-mode current that minimizes battery drain, bus signal waveshaping that meets automotive electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) requirements and protection features that prevent faulted nodes from interfering with other network communications. Operating from a vehicle's 12 V battery system or a local dc power source, the MC33897 functions at low or high data rates.

The MC33897 and MC33897A 14-pin devices are in production now and available at a suggested retail price of 87 cents (USD) per unit in 10,000-unit quantities. The MC33897B eight-pin device is available in sample quantities.
Freescale Semiconductor • (800) 521


EPCOS has developed a new type of ceramic capacitor to minimize the risk of short circuits if the capacitor is damaged. The product is suitable for applications in which the capacitor is permanently connected to the positive pole without extra safety measures. This is the case in automotive electronic circuits connected to terminal 15 or 30, for example.

Connected in series multilayer serial ceramic capacitor (MLSC), the new capacitor reduces these risks significantly. No extra safety measures are required, so that existing designs and layouts can be retained. The internal structure of the new component is based on two capacitors connected in series. Even if one of these should fail due to a short circuit, no short circuit occurs in the overall component. The capacitors of series B37941X are available in size 0805 and ceramic material X7R. Types designed for a rated voltage of 100 V cover the capacitance range from 1 nF to 100 nF, while those for 50 V deliver 33 nF to 100 nF. With voltage derating, the components may be operated at temperatures up to 150 °C and conform to AECQ200.
EPCOS AG • (800)


OmniVision Technologies Inc., a supplier of CMOS image sensors, has launched its first image sensor designed for the automotive market. The OV7940 is a high-performance, highly integrated analog CMOS image sensor based on OmniVision's proprietary OmniPixel technology. This true single-chip solution can be used in numerous automotive driver-assistance applications.

Market analyst firm Techno Systems Research (TSR) projects that application volumes for CMOS image sensors will surpass those for CCD sensors next year, and that by 2008, 20 million CMOS sensors will be in use in the automotive market.

The OV7940 is built to stringent, high-end specifications that meet the automobile electronics council AEC-Q100 criteria encompassing a series of tests including, but not limited to, preconditioning, humidity, high temperature cycle, mechanical, optical and electrical test parameters. For example, it uses a 48-pin quad flat pack (QFP) arrangement that attaches the sensor to the PCB, enabling it to withstand severe vibration, and expansion and contraction in extreme temperatures. Its OmniPixel technology design has an extended operational temperature range of -40 °C to +85 °C and its high sensitivity makes it suited for low light conditions.

The OV7940 is suitable for applications where high-performance image sensors are important. Besides the color OV7940, a black-and-white version, the OV7440, is available. Both devices support the NTSC and PAL formats. These devices are available for sampling and are expected to be in volume production in the third quarter.
OmniVision Technologies Inc. •(408)


OSRAM Opto Semiconductors' OSTAR LED offers more than 120 lumens output and measures 30 × 10 millimeters. Setting new size and brightness records, the OSTAR LED provides extreme degrees of design flexibility, making the product ideal for general and mobile illumination applications.

Each OSTAR LED contains four high-power, thin-film indium gallium aluminum phosphide (InGaAlP) or indium gallium nitrite (InGaN) chips. Because OSRAM's thin-film chip emits light only from its top surface, the resultant high chip luminance can increase the optical system efficiency and reduce the size of optics for lighting applications. The OSTAR LED can be mounted to lighting fixtures without any soldering, and it offers a surface-mount technology (SMT) electrical connector. The LED can be mounted to a heat sink with a thermal paste for optimum heat dissipation.

The OSTAR LED's high brightness, uniform light and low-profile package make it ideal for use in specialty illumination applications. These applications include colored and red-green-blue (RGB) white architectural lighting, fiber-optics illumination, portable RGB light sources, medical lighting, aircraft illumination and automotive exterior lighting applications. The OSTAR LED is also ideal for portable projection units that may be no larger than a deck of cards.

The OSTAR is available for sampling, and production delivery is scheduled to begin in July.
OSRAM Opto Semiconductors • (888)


Sensor Products LLC has announced an integrated tire tread footprint profiling system called Tactilus. Capable of thousands of uses with consistent repeatability, Tactilus detects a wider range pressures and offers greater advantages in the areas of adaptability and customization. Requiring fewer electronic components, its simplified design allows new levels of information sharing and portability. Plus, it is optimized to exploit Windows XP and the upcoming Windows Longhorn operating systems, as well as Bluetooth wireless technology.

The Windows-based Tactilus is offered in several architectures, namely capacitive, resistive and piezoelectric based matrix sensors.
Sensor Products LLC •(973) 884-1755


Siliconix Inc., a subsidiary of Vishay Intertechnology Inc., has released n-channel MOSFETs that combine a high 3.4 V threshold voltage with on-resistance as low as 2.7 milliOhms. The 10 new MOSFETs, available in 40 V and 60 V versions, are intended for use in high-temperature, high-current applications with inductive loads in the automotive, industrial, and fixed telecom industries, such as high-side switches, motor drives, and 12-V boardnets.

When MOSFETs operate in high-temperature, high-current environments, they can turn on spontaneously if their threshold voltage, impacted by heat, starts to approach 0 V. Until now, this posed a dilemma for designers. One solution was the addition of a negative voltage driver to the circuit, but the drawbacks were increased circuit size, cost and complexity. Another solution would be to use a device with a high threshold voltage, but the effect in this case is an undesirable increase in on-resistance.

This new power MOSFET family provides a way out of this dilemma with high-density silicon technology that allows the same device to deliver both low on-resistance and a high threshold voltage that avoids the problem of spontaneous turn-on in automotive, industrial, and other applications involving high temperatures and high levels of current.

Available in the DPAK, D2PAK, and PowerPAK SO-8 packages, samples and production quantities of the new MOSFETs are available with lead times of 10 to 12 weeks for larger orders. Pricing starts at $1.35 each for U.S. delivery in 100,000-piece quantities.
Siliconix Inc. (619)


AMI Semiconductor has announced its next-generation controller area network (CAN) transceiver IC for high-speed, in-vehicle networking (IVN). The new AMIS-42665 high-speed single-chip transceiver combines operation to 1 Mbaud with an extremely low current standby mode and a bus-initiated wake-up capability.

Suitable for 12 V and 24 V automotive applications, the AMIS-42665 is fully compliant with the ISO 11898-2 and ISO 11898-5 standard and is ideal for vehicle body and comfort control functions ranging from electric windows to climate control. High tolerance to electromagnetic interference (EMI) and an electrostatic discharge (ESD) rating of ±8 kV HBM (human body model) eliminates the need for additional filtering and protection, while a low standby current helps designers to meet power targets when the vehicle is idle. Remote wake-up can be initiated locally or via the CAN bus, depending on specific application requirements.

The device integrates into a miniature ‘green’ SOIC 150-8 package all of the functionality needed to provide the interface between a CAN controller and the physical bus. Specifically, the device provides differential signaling capability to the CAN bus via the transmit and receive pins of the CAN controller. As package form factor and pin-count are fully compatible with other transceiver ICs (including the Philips TJA1040), the AMIS-42665 can be used as a ‘drop-in’ replacement to deliver optimum performance in existing designs as well to meet new application requirements.

Designed to provide high levels of in-built functionality, the AMIS-42665 offers a transmit data (TXD) dominant time-out function, thermal protection, short circuit protection, and protection against transients commonly found in the automotive environment. Carefully matched output signals eliminate the need for a common-mode choke by minimizing electromagnetic emission (EME), while the wide common-mode voltage range of the receiver inputs (±35 V) ensures low electromagnetic susceptibility (EMS).

AMIS42665 CAN transceivers are priced at $0.92 each in quantities in excess of 5K units.
AMI Semiconductor (208)

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