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Packaged telematics suit tough automotive apps

Posted: 12 Mar 2013 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Telematics? SAW filters? AEC-Q200?

Telematics is becoming increasingly vital for road transport and thus also in on-board automotive systems. The list of technologies linking telecommunications and IT is growing continuously for both passenger cars and utility vehicles. They include classical satellite-based navigation using systems such as GPS, Galileo, Glonass and mobile phones as well as mobile-phone supported traffic guidance systems and Internet access inclusive of local services. But also WLAN, emergency call systems such as eCall for use in the event of an accident, vehicle fleet management, car-to-X communications and toll systems.

The overwhelming majority of telematics functions in cars have so far been limited to devices that can only receive information such as GPS. With the additional use of mobile phones, however, more and more devices are being used that are capable of both transmission and reception. Application-specific SAW filters from EPCOS in various package sizes qualified to AEC-Q200 are particularly suited for such purposes.

Reliability and miniaturisation in one
Up until now, compromises were often unavoidable in SAW filters for telematics or mobile-phone based applications in cars: they used either compact package sizes of the kind typical for mobile phone technology, or else highly reliable rugged variants meeting the requirements of the automotive industry.

SAW filters from EPCOS in the CSSP package with dimensions of 1.4 1.1 mm² are touted to meet the required high reliability and qualification to AEC-Q200 that are already available for those with dimensions of 3.0 3.0 mm². SAW components in the CSSP package have already been an established standard in mobile phone technology for many years. Compromises between reliability and miniaturisation thus belong to the past.

The new EPCOS SAW filters for automotive electronics applications are touted as the first worldwide in the miniaturized package size 1.4 1.1 mm² qualified to AEC-Q200. The product range of these qualified and space-saving SAW filters is being continuously extended in line with customer requirements.

High demands on robustness
The humidity test (85C/85 per cent relative humidity, 1000 h), the rapid temperature cycling test (1000 cycles -40 to +85 or +125C) and the operating temperatures of up to 125C stipulated by the AEC-Q200 standard represent a particular challenge for the reliability of the components. In order to meet this challenge, the design of these SAW filters had to be specially adapted to meet these demands. This is their key difference from SAW filters that are not qualified to AEC-Q200.

Availability for many years
EPCOS SAW filters for automotive electronics are said to be distinguished by the fact they remain available for a very long time. This corresponds to the long product cycles of the applications in which these filters are used, thus satisfying the rigorous requirements of the automotive industry. SAW filters are adapted to the electrical requirements of the widely used ICs. Customised AEC-Q200-qualified EPCOS SAW filters are thus available that facilitate the design work of customers on their products.

Extensive range for satellite-based nav systems
Up to now, satellite-based navigation systems were used principally to determine locations, such as in vehicle fleet management or tracking systems as well as acting as pilots for specific destinations. A wide range of AEC-Q200-qualified SAW filter components (single and diplexer) for satellite-based navigation systems using GPS, Galileo and Glonass is now available from EPCOS. Their package sizes range from 3.0 3.0 mm² to 1.4 1.1 mm², and various centre frequencies, insertion attenuations and useful bandwidths are offered. EPCOS will naturally also develop suitable filters for the Chinese satellite navigation system COMPASS.

Extended apps of mobile comms technology
When mobile phones first entered cars, their uses were limited to telephony via a hands-free setup. Now, these devices are increasingly being used to access the Internet on the road to contact local services or augment satellite-based navigation. A significant and increasingly important function is navigation responding to the momentary traffic situation. It determines how many mobile phone subscribers are logged into a cell and at what speed they are moving. The more such subscribers present in a cell and the slower they are moving, the denser the traffic or else a traffic jam has built up.

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