FEP As A Dielectric Material For Multi-Gigabit, Single Pair Ethernet Cable for Automotive 2019-01-0483
With the development of autonomous vehicles, and the ever increasing need for advanced infotainment systems and improved driver safety, motor vehicles are fast becoming rolling virtual private networks. Current operating networks, such as CAN bus (Controller Area Network), do not have the network speed and accuracy to handle the needs of these ground breaking applications. What is needed is an Ethernet network, similar to what is used in buildings and data centers worldwide, where the automotive industry can accelerate the adoption of these new applications.
The IEEE 802.3 Ethernet Group and SAE are in the process of developing standards to define the use of high speed networks in motor vehicles. These standards will call for the use of a “single pair” cable to both handle data and to provide up to 50 Watts of remote power.
Automotive communications cables have historically been simple designs that use cross linked materials such as polyethylene, polypropylene, and PVC to endure demanding “under the hood” temperatures, which can approach 150°C. As Ethernet is adopted into new vehicles, the supporting single pair cabling will have much more demanding performance requirements than CAN bus cables. Although not complete at this time, industry experts expect single pair cabling standards for multi-gigabit Ethernet will need to have Category 6a Insertion Loss (Attenuation) performance.
As a dielectric material, only FEP has both the electrical and end use temperature performance needed for under the hood, single pair, multi-gigabit Ethernet applications. Recently developed new grades of “low electrical loss” FEP are ideal for these applications, as they have very stable dielectric performance at the frequencies required of these new cables.
The purpose of this paper is to provide test evidence and documentation that supports the use of FEP as a dielectric material for multi-gigabit Ethernet single pair cables.