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MSDE certifies 98 Trainers, trained in the cluster-based ToT project, under the SANKALP programme, in a convocation ceremony organized by ASDC

ELE Times - Wed, 06/14/2023 - 11:01
  • The program was developed as part of the National component of SANKALP
  • A total of 189 trainers across eight batches were trained under the cluster-based ToT project
  • The 98 trainers certified were part of the last 4 batches of the project

The Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE) demonstrated its commitment to creating a pool of highly skilled trainers through the cluster-based Training of Trainers (ToT) project undertaken in collaboration with Automotive Sector Development Council (ASDC), GIZ-IGVET and Maharashtra State Skill Development Mission (MSSDS). The final 4 batches consisting of 98 trainers were certified through a convocation ceremony organized by ASDC in Pune. Developed as part of the National component of Skill Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion (SANKALP), the trainers received dual certification following assessments by the Automotive Sector Development Council and IGCC (German certification agency). The ToT program covered trades such as Advanced Welding, CNC operations, Robotics, Quality Control, and Advanced Automotive Technology. Key stakeholders involved in the project included MSDE, Automotive Skills Development Council (ASDC), GIZ-IGVET, and Maharashtra State Skill Development Mission (MSSDS).

The certification ceremony saw the presence of Shri Nilambuj Sharan, Additional Secretary and Senior Economic Advisor, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, alongside esteemed individuals Mr. Arindam Lahiri, CEO of Automotive Skills Development Council, Dr. Rodney Reviere, Project Head of IGVET, Ms. Meenu Sarawgi, EVP & Chief – Strategy & Operations ASDC, Shri. Rama Shankar Pandey, CEO, Tata Green Batteries & ASDC GC member, Shri. Suresh Londhe, Joint Director of Industries, Department of Industries, Govt. of Maharashtra, Shri. Sachin Jadhav, Additional Commissioner, Maharashtra State Skill Development Society and Mr. Sagar D. Shinde, Director of Sukhakarta General Engineering Cluster Pvt. Ltd. (SGECPL).

Conducted in collaboration with Sukhakarta General Engineering Cluster Pvt. Ltd. (SGECPL) in Pune, the ToT program successfully trained a total of 189 trainers across eight batches, which consisted of one-month classroom training followed by one-month on-the-job training. The initiative strengthened the public-private partnership in the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) domain, upgrading the technical and pedagogical skills of trainers in line with industry 4.0 requirements. Moreover, it effectively bridged the skills gap by involving industry members in curriculum development.

Speaking at the occasion, Shri Nilambuj Sharan, Additional Secretary and Senior Economic Advisor, MSDE said that “The Cluster-based ToT in the automotive sector is a unique example of synergy between public and private sector as well as industry alignment. The Cluster-based TOT project has been instrumental in providing skill training and upskilling opportunities for trainers in the automotive sector. I would like to appreciate active involvement of ASDC and the units in the Sukhakarta General Engineering Cluster Pvt. Ltd. for smooth and successful completion of the initiative undertaken through the World Bank aided scheme, namely, Skill Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion (SANKALP). With rapid advancements and transformations within the industry, it is crucial to develop a highly competent set of trainers to prepare the workforce to meet the ever-evolving demands. He also congratulated the trainees who were awarded certificates on the occassion”

Mr. Arindam Lahiri, CEO, ASDC, emphasized the importance of upskilling in the competitive automotive sector, stating, ” It is worth highlighting that the project is strategically located within one of the largest automotive clusters, comprising over 3,000 industries supporting auto Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) across India and manufacturing auto components. This location offers a fertile ground for skills development and fostering industry growth. By continuously enhancing the skills of the workforce, we can drive innovation, efficiency, and excellence within the sector.”

The ToT model was initially piloted in Aurangabad, covering three job roles—Advanced Welding, CNC operations, and Robotics—with one batch each and a total of 75 trainers. Currently, the project is being implemented in Pune, an automotive cluster with over 3000+ industries supporting auto OEMs across India. The Automotive Skills Development Council remains committed to continuously developing and upgrading automotive skills to drive higher value additions and integrate skills with academic pathways, making them aspirational.

Recognizing the crucial role of trainers in imparting knowledge, skills, and pedagogical techniques, the Center has prioritized Training of Trainers (ToT) programs as an integral part of the Skill India mission. These programs aim to build a competent and robust workforce across various sectors, multiplying the impact of skill development initiatives.

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Best e-Rickshaw in India

ELE Times - Wed, 06/14/2023 - 10:57

The adoption of electrification in India’s passenger vehicle segment has been swift, leading to convenient and affordable commuting options. It has also presented a lucrative business opportunity for individuals. Consequently, the demand for E Rickshaw models is growing steadily, catching the attention of numerous entrepreneurs. As a result, many original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are entering this emerging sector to fulfil the customers’ needs. Therefore, this blog highlights the top-rated E Rickshaw manufacturers in India, who play a pivotal role in empowering this segment and offering optimal mobility solutions for intercity operations. The mentioned manufacturers in the list contribute significantly to the electric passenger vehicle segment by providing excellent E rickshaws. Without further ado, let’s delve deeper into these manufacturers and their offerings.

Auto EV India Expo

Top 10 E-Rickshaws in India


  1. Mahindra Treo Electric Rickshaws

Topping our list is the Mahindra Treo Electric Rickshaw, offering an impressive range of 141 km per single charge. It boasts a maximum speed of 55 km/hr and can comfortably accommodate D+3 passengers. The Mahindra Treo E3W incorporates a lithium-ion battery with a specific capacity, which is coupled with an electric motor capable of delivering a maximum power of 8 kW and a torque of 42 Nm. The E3W’s charging time is approximately 3 hours and 50 minutes under standard conditions, enabling a full 0-100% charge. The Mahindra Treo is priced between Rs. 2.79-3.02 Lakh, and customers also have the option of availing it through an EMI payment scheme.


  1. Bajaj RE Electric Rickshaw

Since receiving approval from the NCT in 2020, the Bajaj RE EV Electric Rickshaw has been making significant strides in electrifying Indian roads. This electric rickshaw boasts a claimed range of 120 km per charge and reaches a top speed of 42 km/hr. The presence of a 4.3 kW li-ion battery in the electric motor enhances its competitiveness in the market. In terms of dimensions, the electric scooter measures 1,714 mm in length, 1,350 mm in width, and 1,772 mm in height. Additionally, the electric rickshaw has a robust payload capacity of 732 kg, allowing for the comfortable transportation of up to four individuals.


  1. Kinetic Safar Electric Rickshaws

Manufactured by Kinetic Green Energy and Power Solutions, based in Pune, India, the Kinetic Safar is an electric rickshaw that offers a range of up to 100 kilometres (62 miles) on a single charge. It is specifically designed to accommodate up to six passengers and attains a maximum speed of 25 kilometres per hour (15.5 miles per hour). Priced at 1.53 Lakhs, the Kinetic Safar is a product of a company established in 2011, specializing in the development of electric and hybrid vehicles.


  1. Jezza Motors

Jezza Motors, owned by Vani Electric Vehicles Pvt. Ltd is a brand led by a group of dynamic and enterprising entrepreneurs based in Kolkata. The company was established in 2014. Jezza Motors offers a range of electric rickshaws, including the J1000, Super J1000, and J1000 models.


  1. Mayuri Deluxe Electric Rickshaws

The Mayuri Deluxe Electric Rickshaw provides an impressive range of 80-100 km per charge, surpassing a top speed of 24 km/hr. It comfortably accommodates a driver and up to five passengers. The price range for this electric rickshaw is between Rs. 1.05-1.35 Lakh. It comes with a 12-month warranty and features an 8-hour charging time with Voltage protection. Notably, there are approximately 200,000 Mayuri electric rickshaws currently operating in India.


  1. Udaan Vehicles

Founded in 2015, Udaan Vehicles is a prominent company specializing in the production of a wide range of Battery E Rickshaws and E Rickshaw Loaders. Among its offerings are an electric passenger rickshaw and an e-rickshaw loader. The vehicle features a water-resistant 1000-watt motor with a maximum power of 1410 and utilizes a 48V 24 Mosfets configuration. With its capabilities, it provides a versatile range of 75-125 km.


  1. Atul Elite Plus

Atul Auto, a top e-rickshaw manufacturer in India, excels in producing premium auto-rickshaws for various purposes. The Atul Elite Plus, featuring telescopic front suspension for a comfortable ride, charges in 8-10 hours and reaches speeds up to 25 mph.


  1. Big Bull E-Rickshaw

Being a prominent player in the e-rickshaw industry, this company holds a leading position in India. The range of their electric vehicles encompasses E-Rickshaw-Eco, E-Rickshaw-B1, E-Rickshaw-B2, E-Rickshaw-B3, and a loader model. Additionally, they also manufacture electric bikes and scooters. Their products and services are readily available in West Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar, and Assam.


  1. Piaggio Ape e-city

Apé, a renowned brand under the Piaggio Group, is widely recognized as one of the most reliable manufacturers of three-wheelers, particularly known for producing highly fuel-efficient e-rickshaws in India. The unique feature of these e-rickshaws is the utilization of advanced swappable batteries, allowing for easy interchangeability at any charging station.


  1. Lohia Comfort F2F

Among the top electric auto-rickshaws in India, the Lohia Comfort holds a notable position. This e-rickshaw specifically caters to the needs of the last-mile passenger carrier segment. Its three-wheel drive configuration is complemented by dual suspension, providing enhanced comfort and improved balance and stability. The e-rickshaw is equipped with a robust hand brake that effectively withstands sudden jerks and movements.


The introduction of e-rickshaws in India has brought about a transformative shift in the urban transportation scene. The Mahindra Treo, Bajaj RE EV, and Kinetic Safar stand out as exceptional e-rickshaws, each showcasing distinctive features and advantages. Beyond their environmental benefits of reducing carbon emissions and enhancing air quality, these electric vehicles offer passengers a sustainable and economical means of transportation while presenting drivers with a lucrative business opportunity. As battery technology, charging infrastructure, and governmental backing continue to advance, e-rickshaws are positioned to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of urban transportation.

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Mouser Electronics Named Global High Service Distributor of the Year by Molex for Sixth Year

ELE Times - Wed, 06/14/2023 - 10:56

Mouser Electronics, Inc., the industry’s leading New Product Introduction (NPI) distributor with the widest selection of semiconductors and electronic components, is proud to announce that it has received the 2022 Global High Service (Catalog) Distributor of the Year Award from Molex, a global electronics leader and connectivity innovator. This is the sixth year for Mouser to win this top global award.

Mouser received the honors for helping Molex achieve outstanding financial growth in e-commerce sales, as well as for attaining significant customer growth for Molex across the globe.

“We are excited to receive this prestigious global award for the sixth time from Molex,” said Krystal Jackson, Vice President of Supplier Management at Mouser. “It is a testament to our strong business partnership and the dedication of our teams. We look forward to building on this achievement.”

“Mouser has played a key role in contributing to our global success in key markets over the past year, and we congratulate the entire Mouser team on their exemplary performance in 2022,” said Fred Bell, Vice President of Global Distribution at Molex. “Molex is pleased to present Mouser with the Global e-Catalog Distributor of the Year Award, and we anticipate much-continued success together.”

Mouser also won the Molex Global e-Catalog Distributor of the Year Award for 2020, 2019, 2015, 2014, and 2013, and earned the Americas e-Catalog Distributor of the Year Award for 2021, 2020 and 2019, and the European and APS e-Catalog Distributor of the Year Awards for 2020–2018. Molex also honored Kristina Cole, Corporate Supplier Manager at Mouser, with the Molex MVP Award for 2020.

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A Motorola Nexus 6 teardown

EDN Network - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 18:15

This article explores the internal makings of a Motorola Nexus 6 cellphone with a focus on components relevant to cellular telecommunication, including an RF transceiver, cellular modem, and Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ICs. I also outline the step-by-step process used to access the inside of the cellphone. A video of this teardown can be viewed here:

Removing the back cover

The first step in reaching the internals of the Nexus 6 is removing the backplate which is attached with a line of adhesive around the back perimeter of the phone. The tools used are:

  • A small, flathead screwdriver
  • Guitar pick (or similar thin plastic tool)

Using the flathead screwdriver, pry open a corner of the back cover, allowing just enough room for the tip of the guitar pick to enter. Then shimmy the guitar pick along the edges of the back cover, levering it upwards to separate the line of adhesive connecting the back cover to the phone. I left the screwdriver in its original position to keep the corner wedged open in case the guitar pick slipped out during this step. Once roughly half of the back cover was separated, there was enough leverage to simply pry off the rest of the back cover by hand. I found the back cover to be pretty indelicate, so I could apply considerable force to separate the cover.

With the back cover removed, the back frame is visible now, containing the induction coil and battery.

Opening the back frame

Along the edges of the back frame and next to the camera lens should be twenty-two (22) T3 Torx screws. Undo these screws to separate the back frame from the screen and motherboard (Figure 1). (The tool used for this was a T3 Torx Screwdriver.)

Figure 1 The T3 Torx screw locations used to undo the back frame the screen/motherboard.

Separating the motherboard from the screen

As shown in Figure 2, there are two ribbon cables which connect the screen to the motherboard; the first and larger one is the display cable, responsible for relaying video information from the motherboard to the screen; and the second is the touch screen cable that feeds touchscreen inputs to the rest of the phone.

Figure 2 Location of video (red) and touchscreen (blue) ribbon cable connectors.

Both ribbon cables’ connectors are located underneath Kapton tape. To remove the display cable, locate the long ribbon connected below and to the left of the back-facing camera (highlighted red in the above diagram). Using an anti-static spudger, lift the thin white bar opposite the ribbon. Then, you can pull the ribbon away from the connector with tweezers or the spudger.

The touchscreen input cable can be released by similarly lifting up the black tab on its respective connector (highlighted blue). Then again free the ribbon from its connector with the tweezers.

Removing IC shielding

With the motherboard separated, the last thing preventing direct inspection of the ICs are the silver IC shields. Removing these shields should be avoided unless accessing the ICs on the motherboard is necessary for repair or observation; the methodology to remove these shields without dedicated tools can damage the components underneath and renders the shields unusable for replacement. The tools used for this step were tweezers, a heat gun, safety goggles, and a soldering helping hand. Note the safety goggles were very helpful when stray solder, or fragments of IC shielding flung off the board as the shield was freed from the board.

The motherboard was firmly placed in the helping hands and tightened to maximize resistance against any forces applied to the board. I inserted the tweezers into one of the holes in the top of the shield, preferring holes at the corners and choked upwards on the tweezers, away from the shield to prevent burns, and apply a constant upwards force, either by levering downwards or pulling directly upwards.

The heat gun was placed closely above the perimeter of the IC shield (anything more than a few millimeters above the motherboard may mean the solder may not get sufficient heat to melt) and I began travelling the perimeter of the shield, heating all sides equally. If the shield is small enough, you may begin to feel the shield beginning to loosen; continue pulling upwards with the tweezers and walking the perimeter of the shield with the heat gun and the IC should come completely free in one motion.

Telecommunication ICs

This report is primarily focused on the cellular telecommunications aspect of the Nexus 6 so the first and most extensive section will be placed on ICs relevant to this area. However, other ICs will still be briefly touched upon, categorized into whether the IC has a “primary” or “auxiliary” role to the phone’s function. Figure 3 highlights the cellular ICs within the Nexus 6.

Figure 3 An outline of the telecommunication ICs in the Nexus 6.

Broadcom BCM4356 802.11ac + Bluetooth 4.1 IC

The BCM4356 is a highly integrated single-chip device that provides high speed wireless communication over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. For Wi-Fi, the chip supports IEEE 802.11ac, as well as more legacy IEEE 802.11 protocols. The chip uses spatial multiplexing to transmit/receive using multiple antennae and can support up to 867 Mbps of data. This high data rate is achieved with the chip’s support of 256 QAM over an 80 MHz channel, allowing a single modulation symbol to encode an entire byte of information.

In addition, the BCM4356 supports IEEE 802.15.2, a Wi-Fi protocol which seeks to minimize interference between wireless networks operating in the same or nearby frequency bands. Although the protocol was originally built to mitigate interference between similarly banded IEEE 802.11 protocols, the BCM4356 datasheet suggests the IEEE 802.15.2 protocol is used to mitigate the interference between Wi-Fi and LTE/GPS.

The Bluetooth module in the BCM4356 supports Bluetooth 4.1, the most recent iteration of Bluetooth at the time. The BCM4356 also advertises its support for extended Synchronous Connections (eSCO) to improve link reliability and for adaptive frequency hopping (AFH) to mitigate collisions/interference is busy frequency bands. Both these features were introduced in Bluetooth 1.2. Another interesting feature of the BCM4356 is that it contains hardware support for various authentication and encryption, including WPA/WPA2 and AES.

Qualcomm MDM9625M LTE Modem

Through a cellular telecommunications lens, this IC is the most important component of the phone. Released in 2012, this cellular modem provided LTE Advanced capabilities to the smartphones of its time, including the iPhone 6 generation and this Nexus 6 model. Also referred to as 3GPP Release 10, LTE Advanced offered twice the user throughput when compared to prior LTE releases. It could support a peak downlink data rate of 1 Gbps and an uplink of 500 Mbps; the MDM962M doesn’t, however, capitalize on this—only offering data rates up to a still respectable 150 Mbps.

Texas Instruments TMS320C5545 Digital Signal Processor (DSP)

The TMS320C55 is a general-purpose DSP unit. It is highly programmable and can be tailored to many different applications. Some of the applications suggested by its datasheet include audio control, biometrics, voice applications, and software-defined radio; within the context of the Nexus 6, it is likely that this IC is used for one or both of the latter two applications. However, because RF telecommunications are covered in more depth with other ICs, we will focus on the possibility of voice encoding for the TMS320C5545.

A paper by Yang et al. demonstrates that the adaptive multi-rate (AMR) codec can be implemented very efficiently on a very similar DSP unit, the TMS320C64X [1]. Yang et al. tailor the AMR codec approach to be more efficiently ran on DSPs by introducing more parallelism with double ping-pong buffers and by improving memory locality. Because their paper was written in 2008, much before the widespread adoption of Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) and adaptive multi-rate wideband (AMR-WB), Yang et al. only demonstrates using a DSP with AMR bitrates up to 12.2 kbps. However, with a clock speed up to 100 MHz, AMR-WB—with rates up to 23.85 kbps—could easily be supported by the TMS320C5545; this is strengthened by the fact that VoLTE support was added to the Nexus 6 in 2015 [2].

WCD9320 OVV Audio Codec IC

Although this component is referred to as a “audio codec” in its documentation (more accurately, the WCD9335’s documentation), it doesn’t appear to be responsible for the voice encoding responsible for making phone calls. Instead, the WCD9320 is responsible for preprocessing audio inputs, post processing audio outputs, and multiplexing/routing signals to the correct destination. Within its digital processing block diagram are arrays of multiplexors, mixers, decimators, interpolators, and high pass filters to adjust incoming/outgoing audio signals.

Qualcomm WTR1625L RF Transceiver

Transceivers, like the WTR1625L, are responsible for providing the physical interface through which cellular and other RF signals are received and transmitted. The WTR1625L was built to support the transition to LTE Advanced as it is the first transceiver IC the cellular industry to “support carrier aggregation with a significant expansion in the number of active RF bands”. The WTR1625L still supports previous cellular generations, namely 2G and 3G, and also accommodates GPS, including GLONASS and Beidou signals.

Qualcomm WFR1620 receive-only companion chip

Although documentation on the WFR1620 is sparse, some vendors suggest that the WFR1620 acts as a post-processing unit to the WTR1625L, performing the necessary operations to multiplex and interpret signals from multiple carriers received by the WTR1625L to implement carrier aggregation.

Qualcomm QFE1100 envelope tracking IC

The QFE1100 is responsible for the calculations involved in envelope tracking, a practice to improve the efficiency of the power amplifiers used to transmit signals [3]. The envelope of an AC signal is a smooth curve generalizing the signal’s peaks. Envelope tracking adjusts the voltage supplied to the power amplifier in real-time based on the envelope of the signal being transmitted, ensuring that the amplifier operates at peak efficiency. Where a fixed amplifier supply would generate power losses in the form of heat, applying envelope tracking provides significant power savings, improved battery life for mobile devices, and reduced heat generation. Because of the QFE1100’s function, it likely has a direct interface with the RF7389EU F14NRC2 power amplifier.

RF Micro Devices RF7389EU F14NRC2 envelope tracking power amplifier

The RF7389EU F14NRC2 is a power amplifier that supports envelope tracking (See QFE1100).

Primary function ICs

This section focuses on ICs that perform “primary” functions. Figure 4 outlines two of these ICs.

Figure 4 Outline of primary function ICs in the Nexus 6.

SK Hynix H9CKNNNDBTMTAR 3 GB LPDDR3 RAM with Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 SoC

The largest IC, which seems to dominate the center of the motherboard is the CPU/RAM combination chip. The onboard RAM is a 3 GB LPDDR RAM chip built into the processor, communicating with the CPU over two channels at 800 MHz.

The CPU, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 SoC, is specifically built for personal cellular devices. As such, its specifications list interfaces for cellular and Wi-Fi modems. Its cellular interface supports downlink speeds up to 300 Mbps and uplink speeds of 50 Mbps. This interface is a bottleneck, as the LTE modem in the Nexus 6, the Qualcomm MDM9625M, supports 1 Gbps and 500 Mbps downlink and uplink respectively. However, the cellular interface is LTE Category 6, meaning it is the first category to support LTE Advanced.

The Snapdragon’s Wi-Fi interface supports data rates of 867 Mbps with spatial multiplexing and channel rates of up to 80 MHz with a maximum of 256 QAM. Specifications that match the BCM4356 Wi-Fi and Bluetooth modem exactly.

SanDisk SDIN9DW4-32G 32 GB eMMC NAND flash

This IC, the SDIN9DW4, is responsible for the non-volatile memory of the Nexus 6. It stores up to 32 GB and has a data rate of 400 MB/sec.

Auxiliary Function ICs

This section focuses on ICs that perform “auxiliary” functions. Figure 5 highlights the ICs that perform these functions.

Figure 5 Outline of auxiliary function ICs within the Nexus 6.  

TFA9890A audio amplifier 

The TFA9890A is a voltage booster, amplifying the 3.6 V supply voltage of the cellphone battery up to 9.5 V to drive speakers. There are two, located near the top and bottom speakers of the Nexus 6.

BCM20795P1KML1G NFC chip

The BCM20795P1KML1G is a near field communication (NFC) controller chip manufactured by Broadcom. It enables NFC communication between devices in proximity, typically within a few centimeters. Although no datasheets are readily available for this specific chip, it is likely that this IC supports the ISO/IEC 14443 and FeliCa NFC protocols, handling short range, secure, data transmissions.

Qualcomm SMB1359

The SMB1359 is a programmable high-capacity LiPo battery charger. It includes a sundry of safety features, including overcurrent & over/undervoltage safeguards, watchdog timers, charge current/float voltage compensation, and thermal protection. Able to charge a LiPo battery at up to 2.6 A, and supports USB TurboCharge mode.

Michael Fuhrer is a Master’s of Computer Engineering student at Virginia Tech.

Related Content


  1. Jie Yang, Sheng sheng Yu and Mian Zhao, “The implementation and optimization of AMR speech codec on DSP,” 2007 International Symposium on Intelligent Signal Processing and Communication Systems, Xiamen, 2007, pp. 365-367, doi: 10.1109/ISPACS.2007.4445899.
  2. Kellen, “Tip: Simultaneous voice and data now works on Nexus 6 with Verizon,” Droid Life, 12-Mar-2015. [Online]. Available: https://www.droid-life.com/2015/03/12/tip-simultaneous-voice-and-data-now-works-on-nexus-6-with-verizon/. [Accessed: 30-Apr-2023].
  3. G. Wimpenny, “Improving multi-carrier PA efficiency using envelope tracking,” EE Times, 02-Mar-2008. [Online]. Available: https://www.eetimes.com/Improving-multi-carrier-PA-efficiency-using-envelope-tracking/. [Accessed: 28-Apr-2023].
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Chiplets advancing one design breakthrough at a time

EDN Network - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 16:49

What’s the state of chiplet technology today? As the cost advantages of silicon process scaling driven by Moore’s law start to dwindle, will the chiplet approach replace system-on-chip (SoC) designs with multi-die heterogeneous implementations? Are small steps toward implementing chiplet technology sufficient for this landmark semiconductor industry undertaking?

There is no simple answer to these questions yet. But one thing is clear: multi-die architectures are becoming increasingly critical in handling the needs of compute-intensive applications in data centers, cloud computing, and generative artificial intelligence (AI), technologies that require large amounts of memory and fast inter-chip communications.

Then there are automotive and gaming applications that mandate much more reliable and cost-effective solutions than what the current advanced packaging solutions can offer. So, where do the high-performance and highly scalable multi-die architectures for compute-intensive applications actually stand? After years of existence as a small niche, we finally see a few significant breakthroughs in 2023.

Chiplets in organic packages

Successful silicon implementations are starting to demonstrate the full benefits of the multi-die architectures without constraints imposed by advanced packaging such as size limitations of silicon interposers. The chiplet-based systems in standard organic packages can now achieve similar bandwidth, power efficiency, and latency compared to advanced packaging technologies without the drawbacks of these complex and expensive solutions.

The chiplet-based systems encompassing larger system-in-package (SiP) solutions enable higher performance per power at considerably lower cost and higher yield. The SiP-based approach also eliminates the need for silicon interposers, which limit overall SiP size and constrain the amount of memory and compute cores in a package.

The Yole Group estimates that the chiplet-based SIPs market will exceed $135 billion by 2027. However, the economics of adopting a chiplet approach for IC design are tightly linked with the cost and maturity of the interconnect and packaging solutions, noted John Lorenz, senior analyst for computing and software solutions at Yole Intelligence.

Lorenz added that multi-die approaches are more attractive for chip suppliers whose designs must optimize power and bandwidth vectors. “This is especially the case for those in accelerated server computing applications, a market mainly served by data center GPU hardware, and which we see sustaining a 22% CAGR through 2028.”

Figure 1 The energy-efficient chiplet solutions improve performance and reduce power consumption in compute-intensive applications. Source: Blue Cheetah Analog Design

Below is a sneak peek into three recent announcements regarding successful chiplet implementations from startup companies. That clearly shows that more efficient chiplet implementations are emerging, and as a result, chiplet technology is showing signs of tangible progress.

  1. Eliyan’s chiplet implementation

Eliyan, a pioneer in bunch of wires (BoW) chiplet technology, has claimed the availability of a 5-nm silicon device that operates at 40 Gbps/bump and delivers over 2.2 Tbps/mm of beachfront bandwidth at a 130-um pitch on standard organic packaging. It’s based on the company’s NuLink PHY technology and is available on standard packaging technologies at finer bump pitches.

Figure 2 The chiplet platform has been implemented in a standard 5-nm process from TSMC. Source: Eliyan

Eliyan’s chiplet interconnect technology, based on the BoW standard, is compatible with the Universal Chiplet Interconnect Express (UCIe) die-to-die (D2D) interconnect standard, which is rapidly gaining traction. Besides UCIe, Eliyan’s NuLink PHY technology is compatible with High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) protocols.

  1. Die-to-die interconnect IP

Blue Cheetah Analog Design, a supplier of die-to-die interconnect IP solutions for chiplets, has claimed a silicon implementation for a 12-nm test chip. The company’s 2-16 Gbps BlueLynx chiplet interconnect IP solutions are currently available for 5 nm, 7 nm, 12 nm, and 16 nm process technologies. BlueLynx D2D interconnect subsystem IP comprises a PHY and link layer supporting the Open Domain-Specific Architecture (ODSA) Bunch of Wires (BoW) standard and is configurable to support the UCIe chiplet standard.

Figure 3 This chiplet interconnect technology claims to support multiple process nodes while accommodating a wide variety of packaging needs. Source: Blue Cheetah Analog Design

“Our test chip and the tape-outs on various process nodes demonstrate that our customizable and optimized die-to-die interconnect makes chiplets a viable option for companies pursuing that approach today,” said Elad Alon, CEO at Blue Cheetah. Blue Cheetah is currently working with tier 1 and startup companies using BlueLynx chiplet interconnect IP in data center, networking, and AI applications.

  1. Chiplet for ML workloads

d-Matrix, a supplier of AI-compute and inference processors, has unveiled a chiplet platform for energy-efficient die-to-die connectivity over organic substrates. The company’s Jayhawk silicon platform, based on the Open Domain-Specific Architecture (ODSA) Bunch of Wires (BoW) standard, is built on the back of d-Matrix’s Nighthawk chiplet platform launched in 2021.

“It’s the world’s first in-memory computing platform with a chiplet-based architecture targeted for power-hungry and latency-sensitive demands of generative AI,” claimed Sid Sheth, CEO of d-Matrix. The company’s chiplets are built in a block-grid formation to support scalability and efficiency for demanding machine learning (ML) workloads.

More-than-Moore materializing

The chiplet ecosystem is slowly and steadily taking shape. What’s also worth noting is the presence of upstarts alongside semiconductor industry behemoths like AMD, Intel, Nvidia, and TSMC. Furthermore, chiplet standards such as BoW and UCIe are quickly maturing to advance die-to-die interconnect in heterogeneous single packaged systems.

That, combined with innovative design architectures and sophisticated tools, will accelerate the creation of chiplet solutions for heterogeneous computing platforms. As a result, the “more-than-Moore” notion is likely to materialize with viable alternatives to conventional single-die planar chip designs.

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Altair Global Survey Reveals Significant Opportunities to Improve Efficiency, Scale, and Success of Enterprise AI and Data Projects

ELE Times - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 12:44

Survey identifies opportunities to remove organizational, technological, and financial friction

Altair, a global leader in computational science and artificial intelligence (AI), released results from an international survey which revealed high rates of adoption and implementation of organizational data and AI strategies globally. The survey also revealed that project successes suffer due to three main types of friction: organizational, technological, and financial.

“Organizations today recognize the imperative of using their data as a strategic asset to create competitive advantages,” said James R. Scapa, founder and chief executive officer, Altair. “But friction points clearly exist around people, technology, and investment preventing organizations from gaining the data-driven insights needed to deliver results. To achieve what we call ‘Frictionless AI,’ businesses must make the shift to self-service data analytics tools that empower non-technical users to work easily and cost-effectively across complex technology systems and avoid the friction inhibiting them from moving forward.”

The independent survey of more than 2,000 professionals in 10 countries and multiple industries showed a high failure rate of AI and data analytics projects (between 36% and 56%) where friction between organizational departments exists.

The Three Main Areas of Friction

Overall, the survey identified organizational, technological, and financial friction as the main culprits hindering data and AI project success.

Organizational Friction

The survey found organizations are struggling to fill data science roles, which is a significant cause of friction.

  • 75% of respondents say they struggle to find enough data science talent
  • 35% say AI literacy is low among the majority of their workforce
  • 58% say the shortage of talent and the time it takes to upskill current employees is the most prevalent problem in their AI strategy adoption
Technological Friction

More than half of respondents say their organization often faces technical limitations that are slowing down data and AI initiatives.

  • Overall, respondents struggle most with data processing speed, along with making informed decisions quickly and experiencing data quality issues
  • Almost two-thirds of respondents (63%) said their organization tends to make working with AI-driven data tools more complicated than it needs to be
  • 33% cited legacy systems’ inability to develop advanced AI and machine learning initiatives as a recurring technology-related issue that causes friction
Financial friction

Despite organizations’ desire to scale their data and AI strategies, teams and individuals keep hitting financial obstacles.

  • 25% of respondents cited financial constraints as a point of friction that negatively affects AI initiatives within their organization
  • 28% said leadership is too focused on the strategies’ upfront costs to understand how investing in AI and machine learning would benefit their organization
  • 33% said the “high cost of implementation” — whether real or perceived — is one of their organization’s shortfalls when relying on AI tools to complete projects
Project Failure is Common, but Optimism Reigns 

Organizations across industries and geographic regions using AI persist despite high project failure rates.

  • One in four respondents said more than 50% of their projects fail
  • 42% of respondents admit they experienced AI failure within the past two years; among those respondents, the average failure rate was 36% at their organization
  • Despite experiencing AI project failures, organizations continue to use AI because they believe there is still an opportunity to level up capabilities or services in the long run (78%) and its minor successes have shown potential for long-term breakthroughs (54%)

Many organizations struggle to complete their data science projects as well.

  • 33% of respondents said more than half of their data science projects never made it to production in the last two years
  • Moreover, 55% said more than a third of their data science projects never made it to production within the past two years
  • A staggering 67% said more than a quarter of projects never made it to production
Friction Exists Around the World

Globally, the survey revealed that both technology and talent are pain points for organizations when deploying organizational data and AI strategies.

  • Respondents in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) and Europe-Middle East (EMEA) regions reported experiencing more AI failure in the last two years (54% and 35%) compared to the North-South America (AMER) region (29%)
  • 65% of APAC respondents and 61% of EMEA respondents agreed their organization makes working with AI tools more complicated than needed
  • 78% of APAC respondents and 75% of EMEA respondents said they struggle to find enough data science talent
What is Frictionless AI?

When organizations achieve “Frictionless AI,” data analytics becomes an easy, natural part of their business with projects that are quick, repeatable, and scalable. There is no technical friction between them and their data; no organizational friction between data experts and domain experts; no workflow friction between data application design and production deployment for effective decision making; and no migration friction when infrastructure or tools change.

The global survey was commissioned by Altair and conducted by Atomik Research between March 14-31, 2023. 2,037 professionals responded across several target industries with job functions related to data and data analytics. The sample consisted of participants from 10 different countries across the globe, including the United States, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Spain, and the United Kingdom.

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FMI Decodes: How Portable Trace Oxygen Analyzers Are the Next Step Towards Modernization and Key Factor for the Growth of the Global Trace Oxygen Analyzer Market?

ELE Times - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 12:34

The global trace oxygen analyzer market is set to have an expected valuation of US$1.2 billion in 2023. During the projected period, the market is anticipated to develop at a CAGR of 5.4% and reach a market value of US$ 2.1 billion.

The market is expanding owing to an increase in the demand for oxygen trace analyzers in hospitals that measure and show the oxygen content in the inspiratory line of a patient’s breathing circuit.

The application of trace oxygen analyzers in manufacturing facilities and laboratories is widespread, and their popularity is expected to soar. This comprises the preparation of samples, laboratory analysis, and vacuum system monitoring.

The main drivers of the global market are the rising demand for oxygen trace analyzers in the chemicals and petrochemicals, electronics, food and beverage, and pharmaceuticals & gas processing industries.

Worldwide growth in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors has a direct bearing on the need for sophisticated trace oxygen analyzers. The global market is anticipated to develop over the next few years as a result of expanding applications for oxygen monitoring in various end-use industries, such as power generation and food transportation.

Due to ongoing research and technical development, testing equipment has advanced significantly in recent years. Modern trace oxygen analyzers are up to date with the most recent technology advancements, and give consumers detailed information that earlier iterations of trace oxygen analyzers were unable to supply.

Surging Electronic Production Impacts the Global Trace Oxygen Analyzer Market Outlook
  • One of the main industries using trace oxygen analyzers is the semiconductor sector. As the necessity for accurate oxygen readings in the manufacturing process grows, the market for these analyzers is anticipated to expand rapidly.
  • The global trace oxygen analyzer sector has benefited from the electronics industry’s continuing expansion. As the creation of semiconductors demands highly pure gasses and trace oxygen analyzers produce extremely accurate readings at the PPM level, it is highly preferred by electronics makers for a variety of applications in these industries.
  • The rigorous regulatory environment that governs these industries, which necessitates the accurate and dependable measurement of oxygen levels to assure product quality and safety, is another factor contributing to the market expansion.
What Limits the Demand for Trace Oxygen Analyzers

Over the forecast period, the trace oxygen analyzer business is anticipated to expand at a brisk rate. Nonetheless, some limitations are anticipated to impede market expansion. The high cost of instrumentation and the shortage of skilled employees are a couple of the main obstacles. One of the main obstacles to the market is the high cost of equipment.

The pricey equipment needed for trace oxygen analysis must be handled carefully. Small and medium-sized businesses find it challenging to invest in these instruments as a result.

Regional Analysis
  • To maintain market dominance through 2033, North America is on an unbeaten run. This is owing to its rapidly expanding pharmaceutical industry,
  • East Asia is anticipated to have the second-leading position in the trace oxygen analyzer industry.
  • North America & East Asia are estimated to together have 2/5th of the revenue share in the global trace oxygen analyzer sector.
  • The United Kingdom predicts a CAGR of 5.9% by 2033, after adapting to market changes.
United States Trace Oxygen Analyzer Business to Attain Winning Position in the Market

In 2022, the trace oxygen analyzer in the United States market is expected to register 5.2% Y-o-Y growth by volume. The United States market is projected to witness a share of 16.6% in 2023, with the development of new and innovative products.

The growth registered in the country is backed by its developed economy and the presence of leading market participants. Driven by these, trace oxygen analyzer demand is predicted to expand in this region.

FMI projects that the United States market is likely to surpass revenues worth US$ 342.5 million by the end of 2033.

How Does Potential Investment Shape the Trace Oxygen Analyzer Market in Germany?

The trace oxygen analyzer market in Germany is expected to rise at nearly 4.6% CAGR over the forecast period. Increasing investment in the pharmaceutical sector by the governments & growing food & beverage industry in the region are boosting the market.

Besides this, Germany witnesses high demand from the power generation sector for the trace oxygen analyzer. The German market is expected to hold a share of 3.4% in 2023.

Why is the Demand for Trace Oxygen Analyzers Increasing in China?

From 2023 to 2033, the demand in China is estimated to develop at a CAGR of 7.1%. The sales of trace oxygen analyzers have increased in the country due to the rising number of local manufacturers innovating such products with competitive pricing. Besides this, the booming chemical and pharmaceutical industries are helping the market gain traction in China.

Advanced and Portable Systems Surge the Adoption of Trace Oxygen Analyzer in India

By 2033, the market in India anticipates a CAGR of 7.8%. Portable trace oxygen analyzers are the main product of suppliers like Ambetronics Engineers Pvt. Ltd, Mm Automation, and Bhoomi Analyzers. The advanced sensor technology used in the online process of oxygen analyzers is also present in these reliable portable instruments.

For instance: A portable oxygen (O2) gas analyzer called the Kane 510 by Nevco Engineers Pvt. Ltd. is intended for accurate, repeatable measurements of oxygen concentration. These are utilized in welding glasses, controlled environment rooms, fermentation chambers, and fruit storage spaces. A long-life oxygen sensor that can measure oxygen levels between 0% and 21% is included with the Kane 510.

Category-Wise Insights Which Product Type is Sold Maximum in Trace Oxygen Analyzer Market?

The zirconia oxygen analyzer segment is projected to create an absolute dollar opportunity of more than US$ 403.8 million from 2023 to 2033. Due to its advantages over the other options, zirconia oxygen analyzers are highly durable and can withstand high temperatures, and are likely to have a share of 42.0% in 2023.

Besides this, it has low maintenance costs and a high life cycle, which makes it highly preferable among the end users. Zirconia oxygen analyzer provides accurate results in a lesser period, which is the key factor behind the excessive demand from end-use sectors.

Which Portability Type Analyzer is Registering High Sales?

A portable trace oxygen analyzer is projected to create an absolute dollar opportunity of more than US$ 625.9 million from 2023 to 2033. These analyzers are in high demand since they can provide on-site results at various end-use sectors.

Since product development is a key trend observed in the market, manufacturers are continuously working on enhancing the accuracy of portable analyzers. The portable segment is expected to expand with a 5.9% CAGR during the forecast period.

Which End Use Segment has High Potential in the Trace Oxygen Analyzer Sector?

A leading end user of oxygen, with a share of 25.3% in 2023, is the pharmaceutical and healthcare sector. In the upcoming years, a considerable increase in this industry’s demand for oxygen is predicted.

Due to its importance in the management of several medical diseases, oxygen use in the healthcare sector is anticipated to rise. Since oxygen levels in a process must be monitored for safety and quality control, the oxygen analyzer used in the healthcare sector is anticipated to increase.

How can Manufacturers Expand in the Market?
  • With manufacturers investing in research activities to introduce more accurate portable oxygen gas analyzers to get the on-site result. This is crucial to ensure more accuracy, especially in the food & beverage and natural gas processing sectors.
  • Ongoing product development by well-known manufacturers has enhanced market growth. The market is being driven by manufacturers’ development of goods tailored to certain end uses.
  • Manufacturers spend money on research and development to create cutting-edge products that adapt to changing consumer demands. They can concentrate on making trace oxygen analyzers that are more precise, dependable, and efficient.
How Key Players and Start-Ups Contributing to the Market Growth

In recent years, there have been more and more acquisition and growth efforts to strengthen the trace oxygen analyzer supply chain. The creation of oxygen analyzers tailored to certain end uses is a focus for several key suppliers of trace oxygen analyzer components. In this area, various producers have also begun to appear.

To diversify their product offerings, reach new markets, and get access to cutting-edge technology and resources, manufacturers can consider mergers and acquisitions. They can increase their economies of scale and market competitiveness by doing this.

For instance:
  • A new portable headspace gas analyzer called the New Dansensor CheckPoint 3EC was unveiled by AMETEK in 2020. It offers a quality control solution for particular culinary applications.
  • Supplier of gas sensing technologies for the entire food value chain, C2Sense was launched in 2013. It enables users to evaluate the freshness of fish and other highly perishable food items across the value chain, as well as the ripeness of fruits and vegetables. It is creating ethylene and biogenic amine sensors for the same.
  • Gas detection system provider Mirico was launched in 2015. It creates analytical devices with cutting-edge constructions that make use of lasers that emit light in the middle infrared region of the spectrum.
    • A highly innovative stable isotope analyzer is what it produces. As a result, the development and design offer a small footprint, sturdy construction, and remarkable performance.
    • The development and design were initially intended for space exploration, specifically for planetary landers.
Key Players

Emerson Electric Co, Yokogawa Electric Corporation, AMETEK, Inc, Teledyne Technologies Incorporated, Horiba, Ltd, Michell Instruments, Nova Analytical Systems, Advanced Micro Instruments Inc, Alpha Omega Instruments Corp, Analytical Industries Inc, Ambetronics Engineers Pvt Ltd, Orthodyne, Tiger Optics, LLC

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Lam’s Virtual Process Game Compares Humans vs. Artificial Intelligence

ELE Times - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 10:57

Over the past 150 years the most exciting and groundbreaking research has been published in the journal Nature. On April 13 (online March 8) Lam makes its mark in the world’s most prestigious scientific journal with an article entitled, “Human–Machine Collaboration for Improving Semiconductor Process Development,” co-authored by nine Lam employees.

“Our research is truly groundbreaking,” says Rick Gottscho, recent CTO of Lam. “It sets us apart as thought leaders in the application of data science to process engineering.”

The Nature article compares humans versus machines in developing a semiconductor process at the lowest cost-to-target (that is, the fewest number of experiments). To do so, the authors created a game to benchmark the performance of humans and computer algorithms for the design of a semiconductor fabrication process—high aspect ratio dielectric etch.

The results show that humans excel in the early stages of process development while algorithms are more cost-efficient near the tight tolerances of the target. This insight led to a “human first-computer last” approach that reduced the cost-to-target by half compared to a benchmark set by an expert process engineer with more than seven years of experience.

Why it matters: Lam now has quantifiable proof of how to use artificial intelligence in ways that could revolutionize process development in the semiconductor industry, which could save millions of dollars and countless hours.

Avogadro’s Number

To build a chip, we need to develop the individual processes that make that chip. However, every process experiment can take minutes or hours, and then several more hours to prepare the samples for metrology (measurement). For the most challenging applications involving etching or filling high aspect ratio features, results usually arrive the next day and a whole batch can cost a few thousand dollars. Add all of this up over the course of the year and it gets very expensive and eats up a lot of time.


For more than a decade, Rick has highlighted this development problem via a concept he dubbed Lam’s Law (though it’s not just our problem), which refers to the increasing challenge of finding the best recipe out of all possible recipe combinations. The cheeky reference to Moore’s Law suggests the problem keeps getting worse, with the number of adjustable permutations an engineer can make when developing a wafer process exceeding 100 trillion—that’s 1014—an unfathomably large number.

As the complexity around wafer processing has become increasingly immense, the number of permutations may now be approaching 1023 (or the order of magnitude of Avogadro’s number, for the hardcore).

“We cannot afford to explore a parameter space that consists of Avogadro’s number of permutations by testing everything—it’s impossible,” Rick says. “In fact, you can’t even create a data set that would be considered sufficient for big data analytics. One hundred batches of experiments costs nearly half a million dollars and takes half a year, and that is still a small number in the Big Data world.”

Virtual Game

“For years data scientists were suggesting they could build algorithms to help solve Lam’s Law and develop manufacturable processes,” Keren Kanarik recalls. She’s the paper’s lead author and technical managing director in the office of the CTO. Also—and this is crucial—she used to be a process engineer herself and feels their pain. “But how could we know the programs were better than us humans? What would we compare them to? What was the benchmark?”

That’s when Keren hit on the idea of running a game. She thought about the famous chess game between Garry Kasparov and Deep Blue and figured one of our expert process engineers could be our “Garry.” But using which process?

It would be impractical to do this in the laboratory because it would take too long, cost too much, and there would be too much variability that could disguise the learning.

Her boss Rick suggested making the game virtual, so that as many players as wanted could play on the same process as many times as needed.

After a prototype in 2019 and a more sophisticated version created over three months in 2020– a virtual etch process was born.

The virtual process made it possible to play a game that pitted humans against algorithms to evaluate one algorithm versus another, and algorithms against people.

“The virtual environment gives us absolute control and gives us a way to evaluate in a systematic way, allowing us to do these evaluations,” Keren explains.


Schematic of the virtual process used in the game. The input of the virtual process is a “recipe” that controls the plasma interactions with a silicon wafer. For a given recipe, the simulator outputs metrics along with a cross-sectional image of a profile on the wafer. The target profile is shown along with examples of other profiles that do not meet the target. The goal of the game is to find a suitable recipe at the lowest cost-to-target. CD, critical dimension.

Lam Wins

Lam’s study confirmed that machines alone cannot yet do what an expert process engineer can do. If the machines and data scientists who write their algorithms are not given any domain knowledge from the expert process engineer, they’re nowhere close to beating humans. In other words, as far as dialing into the right recipe for wafer processing, human beings are still essential.

But the computer algorithms could—and finally did—win when partnered with the humans under certain circumstances.

Winning Engineer-large

The trajectories are monitored by the Progress Tracker as defined in Methods. The target is met when the Progress Tracker is 0. Trajectories of senior engineers are in green and junior engineers in blue. The trajectory of the winning expert (senior engineer 1) is highlighted in the inset, showing transfer points A to E used in the HF–CL strategy. AU, arbitrary units. 

The results of Lam’s study point to a path for substantially reducing cost-to-target by combining human and computer advantages. In doing so, the authors conclude, “we will accelerate a critical link in the semiconductor ecosystem, using the very computing power that these semiconductor processes enable. In effect, AI will help create itself—akin to the famous M.C. Escher circular graphic of two hands drawing each other.”

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STMicroelectronics’ all-in-one motion and bone-conduction sensor saves space and power in hearables and headsets

ELE Times - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 09:22

Delivers longer listening experience and superior hearing in TWS headphones and AR/VR/MR headsets

STMicroelectronics’ LSM6DSV16BX is a unique highly integrated sensor that delivers tremendous space savings inside hearable devices including sports and general-purpose earbuds. It combines a 6-axis inertial measurement unit (IMU) for head tracking and activity detection with an audio accelerometer for detecting voice through bone conduction in a frequency range that exceeds 1KHz.

In addition, the LSM6DSV16BX contains ST’s Qvar™ charge-variation detection technology for user-interface controls such as touching and swiping. It is ideal for applications such as true wireless stereo (TWS) headphones and augmented-, virtual-, and mixed-reality (AR/VR/MR) headsets.

While delivering unprecedented integration, the LSM6DSV16BX brings superior features to the ear. The sensor embeds ST’s Sensor Fusion Low Power (SFLP) technology, specifically designed for head tracking and 3D sound, and the in-the-edge processing resources featured in ST’s third-generation MEMS sensors. These include the Finite State Machine (FSM) for gesture recognition, the Machine-Learning Core (MLC) for activity recognition and voice detection, and adaptive self-configuration (ASC), which automatically optimizes performance and efficiency. These help to reduce system latency while saving overall power and offloading the host processor.

Together, the enhanced integration and in-the-edge processing save up to 70% of system power consumption and 45% of PCB area. In addition, the number of pin connections can be reduced by 50%, thereby saving external connections, and the package height is 14% less than preceding ST MEMS inertial sensors.

The LSM6DSV16BX comes with many software examples, available on ST MEMS GitHub FSM and MLC model zoo. These include pick-up gesture detection to automatically turn on some device’s services, in-ear and out-of-ear detection in TWS headsets, head gestures for 3D sound in headphones, and many more. To save developer time, without starting from scratch, pre-integrated application examples are available in X-CUBE-MEMS1 package.

The LSM6DSV16BX is in production now, available in a 2.5mm x 3.0mm x 0.74mm VFLGA package, priced from $3.95, for orders of 1000 pieces.

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Vishay Intertechnology Thick Film Power Resistor With Optional NTC Thermistor and PC-TIM Simplifies Designs, Saves Board Space, and Lowers Costs

ELE Times - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 08:53

Designed for Mounting on a Heatsink, AEC-Q200 Qualified Device in Compact SOT-227 Package Offers High Pulse Handling Capability and Power Dissipation to 120 W

Vishay Intertechnology, Inc. introduced a new AEC-Q200 qualified thick film power resistor in the compact, low profile SOT-227 package for mounting on a heatsink. Available with an optional NTC thermistor for internal temperature monitoring and pre-applied Phase Change Thermal Interface Material (PC-TIM) for more efficient mounting, the Vishay MCB ISOA offers high pulse handling capability and high power dissipation up to 120 W at an 85 °C bottom case temperature.

Built on an exposed alumina substrate instead of a metal tab, the device released today lowers costs for automotive, industrial, and avionics, military, and space (AMS) applications, in which it will serve as a precharge, discharge, active discharge, or snubber resistor. With the option to integrate an AEC-Q200 qualified, temperature cycle tested NTC thermistor inside the resistor package, the ISOA simplifies designs and saves board space, while its optional PC-TIM streamlines installation in production.

The device’s high power and high energy dissipation simplifies designs and lowers costs by reducing the need for power components. For applications subject to high and repetitive pulse surges, the resistor can handle high energy pulses (i.e., 110 J for 0.1 s) and is multi-pulsed tested at 230 J for 670 ms and 3000 cycles and 350 J for 1060 ms and 5000 cycles. Additional custom testing options for the device are also available.

The ISOA features a resistance range from 0.47 Ω to 1 MΩ, with tolerances of ± 5 % and ± 10 %, and TCR of ± 100 ppm/K, ± 150 ppm/K, and ± 300 ppm/K. The resistor offers a maximum operating voltage of 1500 V, an operating temperature range of -55 °C to +150 °C, and dielectric strength of 4000 Vrms. The RoHS-compliant device offers a non-inductive design and can include two different resistors.

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“The core idea behind u-blox has always been to explore new business opportunities using module-based solutions with third-party chips” – Andreas Thiel

ELE Times - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 08:46

u-blox develops some of the world’s leading IoT communication and GNSS modules, chips and services supporting the industrial, automotive and consumer markets. Recently Andreas Thiel, Head of Product Centers, Co‑founder, u‑blox AG, was in India for the first time to overlook and expand the business and gauge the opportunities in this part of the world. During his stay in Delhi, ELE Times got the opportunity to have a candid conversation with Andreas Thiel, encompassing the u-blox establishment as a company, its business and opportunities in India, R&D and patents and the like. Excerpts.         

ELE Times: How did you conceive the idea of establishing u-blox AG?

Andreas Thiel:  It’s quite an interesting story. u-blox is actually a spinoff from the Technical University of Zurich, officially known as the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich. Switzerland may be a small country compared to India, but it is home to two renowned technical universities – one in Zurich and the other in Rosan. These institutions hold international recognition and rank on a similar level as MIT in the United States. I had the opportunity to work there alongside my colleagues. At the university as PhD students, there were five of us who founded u-blox, and our focus at the time was on miniaturizing electronics.

This was way back in 1997 when making electronics smaller was a challenge. We were primarily working with multichip modules and exploring packaging technologies. It just so happened that one of our research projects involved miniaturizing a GPS receiver to fit into a mobile phone. At that time, it was quite unimaginable to have GPS integrated into a mobile phone. However, as a research group, we successfully enabled the first GPS receiver in a mobile phone.

Unfortunately, the customer who had the idea of integrating GPS into a phone was probably ahead of the market. The phones turned out to be very expensive, and the commercial success was limited. Although, they did manage to sell a few hundred thousand units at that time. Nonetheless, this experience taught us a great deal about GPS technology, and we were determined to further develop it. Since the university couldn’t help us turn it into a business, we made the decision to establish our own company, which meant putting our PhD pursuits on hold. None of us ended up completing our PhDs. Fortunately, the university was incredibly supportive of startups, allowing us to stay in their offices for two years, providing equipment and resources.

From there, our focus on GPS evolved into a broader interest in GNSS (global navigation satellite systems), including systems like Galileo and GLONASS. Initially, we started from the software side, fully owning the software and using third-party chips. However, as time went on, we realized the potential to design our own chipsets and delve into silicon creation. So, u-blox transitioned into a satellite-based positioning company, specializing in GPS. In 2007, we took the company public on the Swiss stock exchange, using the funds raised to expand into adjacent businesses.

We noticed that many of our customers required tracking applications with communication capabilities, and that’s when we found a perfect fit in cellular modems. This allowed us to sell more to the same customers and significantly grow our business. The core idea behind u-blox has always been to explore new business opportunities using module-based solutions with third-party chips. As we gained a deeper understanding of the technology, we gradually took ownership of more components to deliver superior products to our customers. Initially, we prioritize software development, but as our expertise grew, we ventured into silicon design.

For instance, we developed our own chip for the Cat M standard in cellular technology. However, we are selective about where we invest in silicon, focusing on high-volume markets to ensure a viable return on investment. While we offer numerous cellular modules based on third-party chips, we believe in providing our customers with choices from different suppliers, fostering a diverse supply chain.

Overall, u-blox’s journey started with the miniaturization of GPS receivers for mobile phones. Since then, we have expanded our focus to encompass GNSS technologies, developed our own chipsets, and explored adjacent business opportunities. We strive to deliver innovative solutions by leveraging our expertise in software and silicon design. As we continue to grow, our commitment remains the same – to provide exceptional products to our customers and explore new frontiers in the field of positioning and communication.

ELE Times: You have been associated with R&D Departments and worked in various other capacities, please enumerate the achievements in R&D and the patents filed in your company’s name.

Andreas Thiel: Thanks to our expanding research sites, we now have a global presence, ranging from San Diego in the United States to Lahore, Pakistan. In Lahore, we have a significant software site with a hundred employees dedicated to software development. While we have acquired intellectual property (IP) and patents through acquisitions, our focus is not solely on maximizing the number of patents. Instead, we prioritize protecting ideas we deem valuable. As a result, we generate an average of 10 patent families per year. Our patents hold substantial value, particularly in the field of positioning technology. We cover the entire stack, including not only global navigation satellite systems (GNSS) but also indoor and seamless indoor auto-positioning.

In IC design, we have notable expertise in circuit design, particularly in the mix-signal domain, encompassing power management and RF design. Security is also a significant focus for us, particularly in specific services. Recently, we have seen increased patent activity in IoT, where the challenge lies in achieving low power and data rates while maintaining strong security without excessive overhead. We prioritize developing methods that ensure high security with minimal overhead, especially for transmitting small amounts of data in IoT applications. This necessitates efficient key management systems, an area where we have invested significant effort.

ELE Times: What plan do you have for the Indian market in terms of technology providers and market expansion?

Andreas Thiel: Major global automotive companies have operations in India, working on both domestic and international projects for customers. This presence has been established for approximately a decade. Additionally, we are involved in railway projects, particularly in tracking passenger wagons and related infrastructure. Our products are utilized by telecom companies worldwide for network synchronization and timing references, including customers in India.

It’s really the global tier ones that have been design and produced in India. And we work with them and they export into different markets and also to Indian OEMs, like Tata, Mahindra, Maruti Suzuki. So they are the OEMs, but the trails ones will be global.

ELE Times: India is an emerging manufacturing spot. What is your take on the same? What opportunity do you see in the Indian market?

Andreas Thiel: India is an emerging manufacturing spot and our growth rates in India are remarkable. It is important to note that our current scale of operations remains relatively small. Therefore, achieving high growth rates is relatively easier. It took us some time to comprehend the key factors for success in the Indian market. We experimented with various approaches, including distributors and our own sales personnel. However, we are now establishing a setup that is gaining significant momentum. Initially, it was challenging for us to establish a foothold in India, but we are now making progress.

ELE Times: What technological advancement do you foresee in 3 to 4 years down the line in the areas of IoT Communication, Reliable, fast location and accurate assistance services and IoT Security i.e. End-to-end protection for business-critical data?

Andreas Thiel: We recognize the increasing importance of seamless indoor-outdoor positioning, especially in the supply chain domain. This capability is crucial for tracking goods both on the road and within factory premises. We are actively engaged in this area, leveraging technologies like angular arrival and departure in Bluetooth, as well as emerging solutions like ultra-wideband. Standard access points, such as Wi-Fi, are also serving as anchor points for indoor positioning. We believe we are well-positioned to integrate these technologies effectively. The demand for such positioning solutions is expected to rise significantly across various use cases.

In terms of communication, standardization has played a pivotal role, as evident from the transition to 5G in mobile phones. While the IoT space is currently dominated by 2G and narrow-band IoT, we anticipate a shift towards 5G, particularly for applications like container tracking, trailer tracking, and railway wagon tracking. We are observing the emergence of 5G, specifically the reduced capability version known as 5G RedCap, which holds promise for IoT applications. Although currently limited to high-end devices, we anticipate a gradual integration of 5G into the IoT space, presenting intriguing opportunities.

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Vertexcom HomePlug GreenPHY Chips Support ISO 15118 Plug & Charge, Optimize Electric Vehicle Charging Experience

ELE Times - Tue, 06/13/2023 - 08:42

Vertexcom Technologies Inc., a world-class smart charging communication chip design company, offers solutions supporting ISO 15118 Plug & Charge. This function simplifies the charging process—instead of manual verification by the user, the charging station identifies the vehicle information automatically.

According to CharIN—the worldwide non-profit organization for the support and development of the Combined Charging System (CCS) standard—Plug & Charge enables automated communication and billing processes between the electric vehicle and the charging station without any need for external identification (e.g. RFID cards, Debit/credit cards or charging apps), all the while ensuring robust IT security.

With support for the Plug & Charge feature, Vertexcom HomePlug GreenPHY SECC chipset MSE1021 + MSEX24-i and EVCC chipset MSE1022 + MSEX25-i enable a seamless EV charging experience. By eliminating the need for external identification via physical cards or smartphone apps, users can simply connect their EV to a compatible charging station, and the charging process initiates automatically.

When a compatible, ISO 15118-compliant EV is connected to a charging station equipped with Vertexcom HomePlug GreenPHY System-on-Chip (SoC), the two devices automatically establish a secure communication channel. This channel enables the exchange of critical information such as charging capabilities, payment details, and energy management preferences.

Plug & Charge is outlined by ISO 15118—an International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standard for EV charging communications. Plug & Charge uses a set of encryption algorithms and digital certificates, issued to various roles within the Plug & Charge ecosystem. Through this complex network, Plug & Charge enables secure and tamper-proof communication between electric vehicles and charging stations. Vertexcom HomePlug GreenPHY chips support ISO 15118 standard to ensure interoperability, compatibility, and enhanced security for EV charging systems.

The post Vertexcom HomePlug GreenPHY Chips Support ISO 15118 Plug & Charge, Optimize Electric Vehicle Charging Experience appeared first on ELE Times.


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