NXP has introduced a flurry of new products for automotive electronics designs. The list comprises additional variants of its i.MX 8 microprocessors, more than a dozen new motor controllers of the MagniV product family, a new LF transceiver for secure keyless entry systems and two system basis chips (SBC)s for system-level functional safety systems.

The most prominent product roll-outs are probably the new i.MX 8 processors targeting cockpit applications. Combining high-performance graphics with support for safety-critical functions, they are positioned as enablers for innovative multi-sensory features such as gesture control, audio processing and speech recognition; according to NXP, their performance is high enough to implement natural speech recognition for navigation systems and other cockpit control applications. At the graphics side, they are designed to support high-resolution instrument clusters, head-up displays and up to four video screens with independent HD content or one 4K screen.

The new devices are based on up to six 64-bit ARM processor cores in v8-A technology. In addition they contain a DSP and dual Gigabit Ethernet interfaces and support LPDDR4 and DDR4 memory types as well as the Audio Video Bridging (AVB) networking technology. The new devices include:

  • i.MX 8QuadMax which integrates two ARM Cortex-A72 cores, four Cortex-A53 cores, two Cortex-M4F cores and two GC7000XS/VX GPUs
  • i.MX 8QuadPlus which integrates one ARM Cortex-A72 core, four Cortex-A53 cores, two Cortex-M4F cores and two GC7000LiteXS/VX GPUs
  • i.MX 8Quad which integrates four Cortex-A53 cores, two Cortex-M4F cores and two GC7000LiteXS/VX GPUs

NXP has also added 17 new models to its MagniV motor control MCU family. The new products are single-chip, high-voltage MCUs that combine power supply, physical communications layer (PHY) and application specific hardware drivers within one package.

Addressing a market of some three billion electric motors for automotive applications, the vendor also provides a range of development tools including the NXP Motor Control Development Toolbox and a function library called Automotive Math and Motor Control Library (AMMCLib). With these tools, NXP claims that it is possible to get a new motor control application running within 10 minutes after the chip has been unpacked.

Depending on the individual chip, the additions offer support for CAN or LIN buses at the physical level, package options for the full automotive temperature range (AEC-Q 100 Grade 0) or specific low-cost devices for entry-level applications such as anti-pinch power windows.

The NJJ29C0 is a low frequency (LF) transceiver for secure car access solutions. Combining longer-range performance over existing solutions with enhanced convenience for end-users, the chip contains a six-channel Class D LF driver, a DC/DC boost converter, a microcontroller and the immobiliser reader. It can be combined with existing NXP transponder, microcontroller and RF technologies to implement remote access applications. In terms of security—a much discussed aspect as recently a number of OEMs had to admit that their remote keyless entry systems and car keys have been compromised—the whole system supports HT3 and AES encryption.

The system basis chips (SBC)s for automotive electrification systems has been expanded by the new FS45 and FS65 products. The SBCs target automotive applications such as battery management systems, electric power steering, electric or hybrid electric vehicles and advanced power train systems such as start and stop, or transmission control. Both feature “Fail silent” functionality that helps to ensure predictive reaction after failure, as well as configurable device behaviour that can be adapted by software designers to specific system safety goals. A configurable fail silent strategy supports a variety of system safety concepts and levels up to ISO 26262 Automotive Safety Integrity Level (ASIL) D.

The FS45 and FS65 are NXP’s follow-on offerings to the popular MC33907/8 SBCs, which completed TÜV SÜD functional safety assessment in 2015. The new devices offer optimised efficiency, scalability and reliability, and have demonstrated high quality during qualification, doubling reliability performance compared to standard automotive qualifications requirements from AEC Q100.