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Texas Instruments and Continental collaborate to deliver first 65 nm safety ARM Cortex microcontroller used in advanced automotive safety applications

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International automotive supplier ramps volume production of MK 100 family of electronic stability control (ESC) systems with TI ARM MCUs with embedded Flash

HOUSTON--May 6, 2013: Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) and Continental, the international automotive supplier, are pleased to announce their collaboration on the first 65 nm ARM Cortex safety microcontrollers with Flash technology in volume production.  The Continental processor for advanced control in electronic braking systems (PACE) is the foundation for the Continental MK 100 family of electronic stability control (ESC) systems. This latest innovation is one of the many technologies jointly developed over the last 15 years to deliver leading automotive safety products that are continually improving with updated safety features, power consumption and reliability. This 65 nm Flash technology also serves as the foundation for TI's Hercules safety MCU open market products.

"We are excited to be the first automotive ESC system manufacturer to offer leading-edge safety features based on TI's 65 nm FLASH technology," said Dr. Adrian Traskov, IC development manager in the Electronic Brake Systems business unit at Continental's Chassis & Safety division.  "Developing this complex safety family required close partnership with TI and Continental design teams to render the final system design, IC modeling and simulation, resulting in our final product for the ESC systems."

The Continental MK 100 ESC systems are unique to the market because of their high level of safety integration and Continental proprietary safety MCU architecture with TI's 65nm embedded Flash enable many benefits to auto makers:

  • Smaller form factor, more storage space in vehicles: Integrated MK 100 ESC sensors on the circuit board of the controller and future generations of the electric parking brake will be integrated, controlling Continental or third-party actuators, requiring no separate controller. This integration reduces the amount of controllers, increasing storage space in vehicles.
  • Modular approach with a wide range of functions: The MK 100 family can be scaled to suit varying functionalities (e.g., active rollover protection, trailer stability assist, hill start assist) and level of performance the vehicle manufacturer requires (from high-end to entry-level models). This is enabled with the modular scalable design of the safety MCUs that allow variation in performance and functionality seamlessly.
  • Improved cost/performance ratio: These safety MCUs offer 65 nm performance with embedded Flash technology on a single chip at great value, allowing for the improved safety features in mass production.
  • Enhanced safety architecture and features: These safety MCUs follow a development flow and an architecture aligned with ISO 26262 and IEC61508 standards for easy integration into systems needing safety. The safety MCUs provide a high level of built-in safety for better performance and memory utilization and online diagnostics with dual ARM Cortex-cores in lockstep that are isolated; real-time core comparison, memory protection for the CPU and other bus masters; error correction code (ECC) for Flash and RAM with a single-bit error correction and double-bit error detection (SECDED); RAM optional CPU built-in self-test (BIST) for detection of potential latent faults; self-test capability on core- compare module; intelligent error-signaling module for action based on safety error, parity or optional ECC on peripheral RAMs, redundant timers, as well as continuous voltage and clock monitoring.

For more information, visit: SafeTI design packages, TI safety auto products and Hercules MCUs.