Companies that design automotive electronics must understand how variability affects design quality and reliability.
As more and more companies enter the market, the key elements for these companies to succeed are to ensure that product design fully takes into account the environmental variability associated with car use, the strict quality and reliability requirements they must comply with, and Consumer expectations for performance and reliability. The design team must understand these conditions and apply appropriate techniques to solve design problems and achieve compliance.
There are many factors that drive reliability requirements. First, these devices must be able to work in a variety of physical environments, including extreme weather conditions and environments with large temperature differences. In addition to climate, these devices must also withstand other environmental conditions, including high temperature environments, vibration, long hours of work, and frequent start and stop. To design products that meet this series of requirements is a completely new experience for manufacturers who have only recently decided to produce chips for the automotive market.
For most designers, another new reliability requirement is that the products they design must reach the life expectancy of users. Consumer products usually only work for a few years, while the expected service life of automotive components needs to reach at least 10-15 years. In addition, the car has to create its own system, and there will be a large number of connections between devices, which also makes device reliability particularly important, because in most cases, if one device fails, the entire system will be endangered. As a result, designers have to consider some previously insignificant design stresses, such as dielectric breakdown with time (TDDB), and also need to understand how to analyze and account for these effects. Users expect electronic devices to have a long service life, which also puts pressure on new and immature technologies.
In addition to environmental variability and overall system reliability, there are also variability in the size of the complexity difference between designs. In terms of high-end design, we need to meet the needs of the in-vehicle infotainment system (IVI) market, which can be simply defined as a combination of information and entertainment systems to provide convenience for drivers and passengers. IVI is a complete system that integrates video display, audio, touch screen, and other devices (such as smart phones and media players). The control system or main processor inside the IVI usually uses the latest semiconductor technology to provide the required functions. Memory chips, especially NAND flash memory, are also another important semiconductor component in navigation and IVI systems.
In terms of low-end design, we apply familiar and well-proven mature technologies to various components, such as safety systems (such as airbags), braking systems, powertrain operation and ignition system control. The demand for these chips is the main motivation for increasing the capacity of a given node (in addition to the Internet of Things). Under this market demand, designers will be under tremendous pressure. They must ensure that they maintain the highest yield and reliability from start to finish, even in these traditional designs.
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