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Technical Paper

Microsecond Bus (μSB): The New Open-Market Peripheral Serial Communication Standard

For the past approximately 20 years, the Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI) has been the established standard for serial communication between a host or central microprocessor and peripheral devices. This standard has been used extensively in control modules covering the entire spectrum of automotive applications, as well as non-automotive applications. As the complexity of engine control modules grows, with the number of vehicle actuators being controlled and monitored increasing, the number of loads the central microprocessor has to manage is growing accordingly. These loads are typically controlled using discrete and pulse-width modulated (PWM) outputs from the microcontroller when real-time operation is essential or via SPI when real-time response is not critical. The increase of already high pin-count on microcontrollers, the associated routing effort and demand for connected power stages is a concern of cost and reliability for future ECU designs.
Technical Paper

System-Level Partitioning Using Mission-Level Design Tool for Electronic Valve Application

In defining innovative and cost-effective chip sets for future automotive applications, system architects need high-level tools that allow them to rapidly determine the best silicon partitioning for a given application in terms of system performance as well as cost. The tool needs to be flexible, modular, and swift such that the system designer can perform abstract simulation iterations quickly for various functional partitioning scenarios, without requiring excessive computer resources. The tool must also be portable and adaptable to provide a simulation environment suitable to systems- or car-manufacturers for in-depth applications simulation and architecture assessment. The semiconductor component definition process using such a “mission-level” design tool for the automotive application electronic valve will be demonstrated. Methods for the analysis of electronic valve control system architectures using mission-level simulation will be developed.