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On Electronics - March 2009

Hella’s SENT Sensor Hella KGaA Hueck & Co. is unveiling a new line of digital sensors in late 2009 to replace analog versions, The sensors use the Single Edge Nibble Transmission (SENT) protocol: one “nibble” refers to 4 bits of data transmitted per pulse.

Hella’s SENT Sensor 
Hella KGaA Hueck & Co. is unveiling a new line of digital sensors in late 2009 to replace analog versions, The sensors use the Single Edge Nibble Transmission (SENT) protocol: one “nibble” refers to 4 bits of data transmitted per pulse. Designed to transmit high-resolution data to electronic control units (ECUs), Hella bills the sensors, which are connected directly to the ECUs, as a lower-cost solution to Controller Area Network and Local Interconnect Network-bus systems. The SENT protocol works with Hella’s Contactless Inductive Position Sensor (CIPS) technology, designed to measure travel or angle changes, while being resistant to vibration and high heat.


Renesas’ Nav Processor
Renesas Technology America’s (San Jose, CA; www.america.renesas.com) new system on a chip combines dual-core 32-bit CPUs pegged for 3D graphics in navigation systems and multimedia applications. Running at 533 Mhz, the device processes 1.92 billion instructions per second. The dual-core SH-Navi3 incorporates a two-channel, 16-bit dedicated bus interface operating at 533 MHz for connecting high-speed DDR3-SDRAM and enabling data sharing at up to 4.27 gigabytes per second. Channels of the dedicated bus can be accessed at the same time.
SiRF’s new GSC3e/LPA single-chip GPS receiver.
SiRF’s new GSC3e/LPA single-chip GPS receiver.
SiRF’s GPS Receiver
SiRF Technology Holdings (San Jose, CA; www.sirf.com) has developed the GSC3e/LPA single-chip GPS receiver for Tier 1 electronics requirements. The GSC3e/LPa is available in 0.8-mm pitch ball grid array package and is integrated SiRF GRF3i+ GPS radio’s dual-range IF band filter with a default 2-MHz bandwidth, created to resist radio frequency interference and improve vehicle platform integration. SiRF partnered with M/A-COM Technology Solutions (Lowell, MA; www.macom-wireless.com) on a GPS module, which, when fitted with the SiRFDRive2 software, tracks wheel tick counts, vehicle speed and other sensor data that the module collects from the vehicle’s CAN bus network and combines with GPS satellite signal measurements to position, heading and other metrics.
TRW’s Active Head Restraint
TRW’s Active Head Restraint uses a lighter mechanical concept with fewer parts.
TRW’s Lighter Whiplash Fighter
The mechanical concept behind TRW Vehicle Safety Systems Inc. new Active Head Restraint (AHR) is lighter, has fewer parts and when matched with its electronic control unit, is 9 lb. lighter than competitor units, the company says. The whiplash-preventing AHR was designed to integrate with any seat geometry. After it’s activated, the AHS may be reset by the consumer instead of requiring a trip to the dealer to service it.
Testing FlexRay
TTTech Automotive (Vienna; www.tttech.com) has designed a FlexRay-enabled chassis in a concept with Audi AG subsidiary Audi Electronics Venture. Called “Pegasus,” the pilot project will test several safety-systems via the communications protocol. The chassis was integrated into an S4 Avant concept vehicle to study’s FlexRay’s time-triggered performance compared with CAN systems.

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