EBV - RF and microwave - technology examples (LC)

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Technology examples: Automotive

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The vehicular routers provide Internet access using UMTS and LTE as wireless Internet connection

This router with integrated access point enables transportation companies to offer Internet access to passengers or acts as a remote access device for condition monitoring. Meanwhile, even the smallest cars support the use of mobile radio devices in the vehicle, while cars at the higher end of the market often already have a built-in transmitter/receiver system for the mobile network (GSM, 3G, 4G or LTE). In addition, so-called compensators are increasingly used, which improve the radio cell coverage and the link quality. Such a compensator is a relatively complex system that incorporates filters and switches for many frequency bands; it contains LNAs and power amplifiers, filters, couplers, switches, etc.

ACC - Adaptive Cruise Control (MM)

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ACC - Adaptive Cruise Control

All currently available ACC systems use radar sensors to determine the distance to the vehicle ahead

Next step up in ACC systems is the anti-collision system, in which the sensors all operate in the 77 GHz area, in a band that is reserved exclusively for the automotive sector. Nowadays, well-equipped new vehicles even have other radar systems that operate mainly in the 24 GHz band. These are systems such as Blind Spot Detection (BSD), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), etc. In all radar applications, the vehicle transmits an individually modulated signal - for example, in saw-tooth shape, frequency-modulated, etc., – which is then reflected, in the case of the ACC, from the vehicle ahead and detected by a number of antennae. In the case of ACC, it is also important to capture angular information for the reflected radar signal at the same time, using relatively complex antenna systems in order to include in the calculations only information for vehicles in the same lane, and not for vehicles in other lanes. EBV Elektronik supports its customers with many different components for use in radar applications. The spectrum ranges from diodes to MMICs that are usually implemented in SiGe technology. For price reasons, GaAs products do not currently play a role in vehicles and SiGe products remain the first choice. However, there are already approaches that still take advantage of lower-cost CMOS technology in the form of RF CMOS processes for this application.

Car 2 Car / eCall

For reasons of comfort and also with a view to future automated driving, C2C or C2x communication is currently a very hot topic

C2C stands for Car-to-car, while C2x denotes car-to-x, where the ‘x’ denotes an arbitrary communication partner such as another car (C2C), transport infrastructure elements (C2I), such as a traffic light, or a railway or other barrier system. Currently a standard is emerging, according to which C2x communication will probably operate based on a procedure from the WLAN area, in the 5.8 GHz frequency range. This standard is expected to bear the name IEEE 802.11p, with the 5.8 GHz band being reserved exclusively for C2x applications. After an accident, vehicles that are equipped with an eCall system,will automatically send a distress call over the mobile network (GSM, GPRS, UMTS, LTE) in which they will transmit not only GPS location details but also assessments of the vehicle’s state (for example, both front airbags inflated, ABS/ESP active).

Car radio

Software defined radio technology provides an efficient and comparatively inexpensive solution to hardware based radios

Allowing multimode, multi-band and/or multi-functional wireless devices that can be enhanced using software upgrades. In addition to the receiver components for the standard AM and VHF bands, receivers for DAB and other satellite services play an increasing role in automotive electronics. In the future, software defined radio (SDR) will become more important.

GNSS (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, Compass etc.)

GNSS has become a standard request from customers

They will benefit from the advantages as faster cold start times and more precise accuracy enhancing their applications.From differences in the propagation time for signals transmitted from various navigation satellites to the Earth, a GPS receiver calculates the current location co-ordinates. Nowadays anyone who wants to use GPS data, uses a complete GPS module; but even more complex systems are now used in cars: roof-mounted ‘shark fin’ housings (so-called because of their appearance) contain a mobile radio, a satellite radio, an AM/FM-receiver and a GPS receiver in the smallest of spaces, often with a low-noise amplifier (LNA) behind the GPS antenna to boost the signal strength or the reception quality.

Remote Keyless Entry Passive Entry (MM)

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Remote keyless entry / passive entry

Wireless remote keyless entry (RKE) for car central-locking systems has been available for at least 20 years

This feature is a good example of a product that was originally only launched at the premium end of the market, but has since become standard even in small cars. Communication between the key and the vehicle may be either uni- or bi-directional. In uni-directional communication the key sends a specific code which the car receives. For security reasons, the code varies with each locking or unlocking operation (rolling code). All newer systems operate bi-directionally, so that not only does the key transmit a signal to the car but the car also transmits a signal to the key. Here, cryptographic algorithms such as RSA, DES, AES etc., are used to encrypt the data transmitted. This information data is transmitted by the key system in the sub-GHz range. The systems operate at 315 MHz in the United States, and in the 433 MHz and 868 MHz ISM bands in Europe. In various new vehicles, so-called passive entry methods are used, in which it is no longer necessary to press a button on the remote control. If the driver wants to open the door, he has only to pull on the door handle. The vehicle then checks if there is a valid credit-card-sized key card in the vicinity of the driver's door. Such a key card operates according to the LFID (Low Frequency Identification) method: when the door handle is pulled the vehicle transmits a signal at a frequency that is usually in the range 125 to 135 kHz. This signal not only transmits the data but also provides the key card with power to wake it from the deep-sleep state. Further communication usually then follows over frequencies in the 315 MHz, 433 MHz or 868 MHz ranges with the key card’s built-in battery.