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Updated: 27 min 58 sec ago

Why AI and embedded design share the same DNA?

Tue, 11/28/2023 - 08:26

PHILIP LING, Senior Technology Writer | Avnet

Change is always around the corner. Right now, it is in the shape of machine learning (ML). It is no exaggeration to say that artificial intelligence (AI) is influencing every aspect of the modern world. The extent of its influence will vary, as does the type of AI. Machine learning is a subset of AI, with recognized limitations. But these limitations mean ML requires fewer resources. This makes ML useful in edge applications. Detecting a wake word is a good example.

AI involves complex algorithms. Training ML models normally takes place in the cloud and handled by powerful hardware such as graphics processors (GPUs) with access to a lot of fast memory. Running many trained models in the cloud makes sense if the cloud resources can expand to meet demand. The cloud resources needed to run millions of instances of those trained ML models would far exceed the resources needed to train the original model.

Running those ML models at the edge is attractive to cloud providers. We can point to smart speakers as an example. The wake word can be handled at the edge by ML, while the AI providing the voice recognition is hosted in the cloud.

Executing trained ML models in edge devices reduces cloud demand. Local ML also avoids network latency and expensive cloud processing. Models are running on small, connected devices sitting at the edge of wide-area networks. In some cases, the device may not need a high-bandwidth network connection, as all the heavy ML lifting happens on the device.

In simple terms, running an ML model on an embedded system comes with all the same challenges doing clever things on constrained platforms has always had. The details, in this case the model, vary, but the basics are the same. Engineers need to select the right processing architecture, fit the application into the type and amount of memory available, and keep everything within a tight power budget.

The key difference here is the kind of processing needed. ML is math-intensive; in particular, multidimensional math. ML models are trained neural networks, which are basically multidimensional arrays, or tensors. Manipulating the data stored in tensors is fundamental to ML. Efficient tensor manipulation within the constraints of an embedded system is the challenge.

From dataset to trained model

Tensors are the main building blocks of AI. Training datasets are often provided as a tensor and used to train models. A dataset for a motion sensor might encode x, y and z coordinates, as well as acceleration. Each instance is labelled to indicate what the data represents. For example, a fall will generate a consistent but variable kind of data. The labelled dataset is used to train an ML model.

A neural network comprises layers. Each layer provides another step toward a decision. The layers in a neural network may also take the form of a tensor. In an untrained network, all connections between layers are random. Adjusting the connections between layers in a neural network creates the trained model.

Training involves changing the weight of connections between the nodes in the neural network’s layers. The weights are changed based on the results of mining the connections in the dataset. For example, the model may learn to recognize what a fall looks like by comparing common features it detects in a dataset.

The tensor of a training dataset might encode multiple instances of motion sensor data. Some of the instances will be labelled as a fall. Finding the connections between the instances labelled as a fall creates the intelligence.

What does a trained ML model look like? The many forms of AI Artificial intelligence is even more diverse the organic intelligence. Technology provides the framework but the foundations exist in advanced mathematics.Artificial intelligence is even more diverse the organic intelligence. Technology provides the framework but the foundations exist in advanced mathematics.

An untrained neural network with a specified number of layers will start with randomly assigned weights for the connections between those layers. As the model learns from the dataset, it will adjust the weight of those connections. As raw sensor input data passes through the layers of a trained model, the weights associated with the connections will change that data. At the output layer, the raw data will now indicate the event that generated that data, such as a fall.

A weight value will typically be between -0.5 and +0.5. During training, weights are adjusted up or down. The adjustment reflects the strength of the connection in a path to a specific action. A positive weight is called an excitatory connection, while a negative weight is an inhibitory connection. Weights that are close to zero have less importance than weights closer to the upper or lower limit.

Each layer in the trained model is essentially a tensor (multidimensional array). The layers can be represented in a high-level programming language, such as Python, C or C++. From there, the high-level language is compiled down to machine code to run on a specific instruction set architecture.

Once trained, the model applies its learnt intelligence on unknown data, to infer the source of the data. Inferencing requires fewer resources, which is why it can be applied at the edge using more modest hardware.

The performance of the model depends on the embedded system. If the processor can execute multidimensional math efficiently, it will deliver good performance. But the size of the model, number of layers and width of the layers will have a big impact. Fast memory access is another key parameter. This is why developing an ML application to run on an end point is fundamentally an extension of good embedded system design.


Making ML models smaller

Even with a well-trained model, edge ML performance is very dependent on the processing resources available. The overriding objective in embedded system design has always been to use as few resources as possible. To address the dichotomy, researchers have looked at ways of making the trained models smaller.

Two common approaches are quantization and pruning. Quantization involves simplifying floating-point numbers or converting them to integers. A quantized value takes up less memory. For accuracy, floating-point numbers are used during training to store the weights of each node in a layer, as they give maximum precision. The aim is to reduce the precision of floating-point numbers, or convert the floating-point numbers to integers after training, without impacting overall accuracy. In many nodes, the precision lost is inconsequential to the result, but the reduction in memory resources can be significant.

Pruning involves removing nodes with weights that are too low to have any significant impact on the result. Developers may choose to prune based on the weight’s magnitude, only removing weights with values close to zero. In both cases, the model needs to be tested iteratively to ensure it retains enough accuracy to be useful.


Accelerating tensor manipulation in hardware

Broadly speaking, semiconductor manufacturers are taking three approaches to ML model acceleration:

  • Building conventional but massively parallel architectures
  • Developing new, tensor-optimized processor architectures
  • Adding hardware accelerators alongside legacy architectures

Each approach has its merits. The approach that works best for ML at the edge will depend on the overall resources (memory, power) needed by that solution. The choice also depends on the definition of edge device. It may be an embedded solution with limited resources, such as a sensor, but it could equally be a compute module.

A massively parallel architecture adds multiple instances of the functions needed for a task. Multiply and Accumulate (MAC) is one such function used in signal processing. Graphical processor units (GPUs) are normally massively parallel and have successfully secured their place in the market thanks to the high performance they deliver. Equally, field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) are a popular choice because their logic fabric supports parallelism. Although built for math, digital signal processors, or DSPs, have yet to be recognized as a good option for AI and ML.

Homogeneous multicore processors are another example of how parallelism delivers performance. A processor with 2, 4 or 8 cores delivers higher performance than a single core processor. The RISC-V is becoming favored in multicore designs for AI and ML, as the architecture is also extensible. This extensibility allows custom instructions to be instantiated as hardware acceleration blocks. There are already examples of how the RISC-V is being used in this way to accelerate AI and ML.

New architectures designed for tensor processing are also appearing on the market, from both large and small semiconductor vendors. The trade-off here might be the ease of programmability for a new instruction set architecture versus the performance gains.


Hardware acceleration in MCUs for ML applications

There are many ways semiconductor companies, both established and startup, are tackling AI acceleration. Each will hope to capture a share of the market as demand increases. Looking at ML at the edge as a purely embedded systems design challenge, many of those solutions may see limited adoption.

The reason is simple. Embedded systems are still constrained. Every embedded engineer knows that more performance is not the goal, it is always just the right amount of performance. For the deeply embedded ML application, the preference is likely to be a familiar MCU with hardware acceleration.

The nature of ML execution means the hardware acceleration will need to be deeply integrated into the MCU’s architecture. Leading MCU manufacturers are actively developing new solutions that integrate ML acceleration. Some of the details of those developments have been released but samples are still some months away.

In the meantime, those same manufacturers continue to offer software support for training models and optimizing the size of those models to run on their existing MCU devices.


Responding to demand for ML at the edge

Machine learning at the edge can be interpreted in many ways. Some applications will be able to use high-performance 64-bit multicore processors. Others will have a more modest budget.

The massive IoT will see billions of smart devices coming online over the next several years. Many of those devices will have ML inside. We can expect semiconductor manufacturers to anticipate this shift. We already see them gearing up to respond to increased demand.


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Infineon @ TRUSTECH 2023: Mini airport booth displays TEGRION and SECORA Pay demos for high performance government IDs and payment

Mon, 11/27/2023 - 13:19

At TRUSTECH, the tradeshow for innovative payment and identification solutions, Infineon Technologies AG will present the latest member of the TEGRION family, which accelerates future-proof ID applications. Infineon’s mini airport booth will also feature the world’s first PQC-enabled ePassport demonstrator. In addition, visitors can experience the convenience of seamless payment with SECORA Pay X, which will be demonstrated in a pop-up manicure salon for fingernails suitable for contactless payment.

TEGRION offers next-level security, efficiency, and performance

The TEGRION SLC26G is a security controller for demanding identity and government ID applications such as ePassports, national eID, and eHealth Care systems. The security controller enables customers to quickly and easily implement their operating system and the corresponding applications. Even more, the controller offers the highest levels of security, speed, performance, and power efficiency that are essential for government ID applications. These require permanent security throughout the life of the documents, as well as fast transaction times, for example at border control when travel documents need to be checked electronically at an eGate. For this ultra-fast contactless communication, the TEGRION SLC26G integrates Very High Bit Rates (VHBR).

In addition, the security controller is equipped with the integrated Integrity Guard 32 security architecture, which provides the highest levels of security without compromising on transaction performance. The Integrity Guard 32 digital security technology, combined with the Arm v8-M instruction set and powerful crypto accelerators, offers the highest levels of protection, high communication speed, and extremely low power consumption. Based on Infineon’s 28 nm technology, the TEGRION family meets even the most demanding security standards and requirements.

Electronic passport security for the quantum computer era

Infineon, Bundesdruckerei GmbH, and the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied and Integrated Security (AISEC) present the world’s first demonstrator for an electronic passport that meets the security requirements of the quantum computing era (Post Quantum Cryptography, PQC). The demonstrator shows a solution for contactless data transmission between the ePassport and the border control terminal. The solution is based on a quantum-resistant version of the Extended Access Control (EAC) protocol and secures biometric data during authentication. The security procedures are compatible with established structures and can also implement quantum-resistant encryption.

SECORA Pay Bio for secured and convenient contactless payments

Biometric payment cards offer a more convenient and hygienic payment experience, as cardholders can verify their identity by simply placing a finger on the card sensor and tapping the card on the terminal. This allows the biometric payment process faster than standard PIN-based transactions. To further improve the performance and production efficiency of biometric payment cards, Infineon is working with Fingerprints to develop the complete SECORA Pay Bio solution. This turnkey solution comes with a pre-certified Java Card operating system including Mastercard and Visa Bio applets for cost-effective, scalable production based on state-of-the-art card manufacturing equipment. A SECORA Pay Bio demo will be shown at the Infineon booth, highlighting the key requirements for a successful biometric payment card solution, including the various enrollment options.

Pop-up fingernail salon showcases innovative forms of payment methods

This year, Infineon’s partner Smart Chip Switzerland will present an innovative pop-up fingernail salon at the Infineon booth, giving the public the opportunity to test the next level of payment: Brave visitors can have a specially designed inlay with Infineon’s SECORA Pay X solution placed directly on their fingernail for on-the-go payment. In addition, numerous other new wearable payment devices, including rings, bracelets, key fobs, and watches, will be presented in the service area of the booth. All these devices are equipped with products from the SECORA Pay or SECORA Connect solution families for connected IoT devices for secured payment. Based on an enhanced NFC Secure Element design, SECORA Connect enables smart wearables with payment, ticketing, and other applications for both battery-less operation and battery-powered devices with the lowest possible power consumption to maximize battery life for the consumer.

CALYPSO move enables enhanced security for contactless paper tickets

As cities grow, public transport operators are faced with ever-increasing passenger numbers, especially during major events such as football matches and the Olympic Games. Combined with the need for sustainability and convenience, this is creating a rapidly growing market for digital ticketing and smart mobility. However, this requires open standards for designing secured, convenient, and interoperable ticketing solutions with the necessary transparency and trust.

Infineon addresses this development with the CALYPSO move, the first secured memory for simple contactless ticketing based on the Calypso base specification. It enables manufacturers to meet the specific requirements of any transport company or authority and to avoid the use of magnetic strips, barcodes, or proprietary tickets. A CALYPSO move sample card will be on display at the Infineon booth at TRUSTECH.

Meet the Infineon experts

At the Innovation Stage at TRUSTECH, visitors will have the opportunity to discuss the following topics with Infineon experts:

  • “Coil on Module Contactless – Best fit for your ultra-thin eData page” on 28 November 2023 at 2 p.m. presented by Florian Treutinger, Product Marketing Manager at Infineon
  • “Getting greener: Innovations for more sustainable payment smart cards” on 28 November 2023 at 4:20 p.m. presented by Ester Jimenez, Product Marketing Manager for payment and transport applications at Infineon.

Infineon at TRUSTECH 2023

Visit Infineon at this year’s TRUSTECH from 28 through 30 November at Paris Expo Porte de Versailles, booth G035 in Pavilion 5.2. Dive into the Infineon mini airport booth where the company will unveil the world’s first PQC-enabled ePassport demonstrator as well as seamless biometric payment solutions with SECORA Pay Bio. In addition, the latest breakthroughs in innovative payment form factors will be showcased, including a pop-up manicure salon where visitors can be fitted with an artificial fingernail for contactless payment.

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ETAS and Infineon receive NIST CAVP certification for ESCRYPT CycurHSM implemented on AURIX microcontrollers

Mon, 11/27/2023 - 13:11

ETAS GmbH, a leading solution provider for Software Defined Vehicles (SDV), and Infineon Technologies have successfully certified their cryptographic algorithm suite. The certificate was validated under the Cryptographic Algorithm Verification Program (CAVP) of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and granted for ESCRYPT CycurHSM. This automotive-embedded security software stack is implemented on Infineon’s second-generation AURIX TC3xx hardware security module (HSM).

The internationally recognized CAVP test protocol is considered a de facto standard. It validates the quality of cryptographic algorithm implementations and ensures their correct operation as defined by NIST, the U.S. federal agency responsible for developing cryptographic standards and guidelines. With the CAVP certification, the independent validation of the implemented cryptographic suite ensures that a critical requirement for Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) certification, the U.S. federal government’s standard for cryptographic software, has been met.

“By achieving this CAVP certification, both ETAS and Infineon further demonstrate our commitment to providing best-in-class security solutions to our customers,” said Mark Elkins, Onboard Security Operational Unit Concept and Delivery Lead of ETAS. “The CAVP certification eases the burden of additional algorithm validation for automotive OEMs worldwide, ensuring that only state-of-the-art security products are installed in their vehicles.”

“This CAVP certification will further increase customer confidence in Infineon’s MCU products as well as the software solutions developed within our partner ecosystem,” said Thomas Schneid, Senior Director Software, Partnership & Ecosystem Management at Infineon Technologies. “AURIX offers a rich portfolio, and with partners like ETAS as a solution provider we can demonstrate that this is perfectly suited for demanding automotive applications in a constantly evolving market.”

ESCRYPT CycurHSM is an automotive embedded security software stack that implements a security trust anchor using the hardware security module on automotive microcontrollers (MCU). It helps meet complex OEM security requirements and can be deployed in any automotive electronic control unit (ECU) including domain controllers. ESCRYPT CycurHSM enables smooth integration into any AUTOSAR stack or bootloader and is also useful for non-AUTOSAR systems.

Infineon’s second-generation AURIX TC3xx HSM is available across all variants of the AURIX TC3xx MCU family. Therefore, the CAVP validation of ESCRYPT CycurHSM V2.7.13 applies across the entire AURIX TC3xx family. This demonstrates that the AURIX TC3xx HSM is fully capable of supporting CAVP-validated cryptographic algorithm implementations with the help of integrated crypto accelerators.

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STMicroelectronics Paves the Way as the Smartcard Leader at SmartTech Asia 2023

Mon, 11/27/2023 - 08:46

STMicroelectronics, paving the way as a prominent leader in smartcard technology joined the SmartTech Asia 2023 – a premier trade fair in India as an Associate Sponsor.

With primary focus on smartcard technologies and applications, identification, authentication, and digital payments, SmartTech Asia 2023 was held from 13-15 September 2023, in BIEC, Bengaluru, and witnessed participation from across the globe.

ST has been extensively involved in R&D in Connected and Sustainable security solutions, and it showcased its latest advancements in RFID, IoT, biometrics, card and payments, and e-security at Booth SE11, Hall 3.

ELE Times interacted with Deepak Agarwal and Amit Sethi from Tech Marketing, STMicroelectronics to understand the key demos at display.

The Game-Changing Products Showcase

The products developed by ST at the helm of smartcard technology bring new facets in areas of Payment and banking solutions / new security solutions and NFC and connectivity solutions.

The Displayed Products included –

  1. Metallic Card

Innovative and premium feel payment card form factor card with STPay solution that provides full metal experience to VIP customer bases, elevates customer status, and improves brand perception and experience.

Features :

  • Full metal experience
  • STPay ST Secure Payment solution
  • ISO7816, ISO14443
  • Enhanced HW Crypto (EDES, AES, RSA, ECC)
  • ST31 Secure MCU (EMVCO & Common Criteria certified)
  1. Dynamic CVV

Innovative battery-less dynamic CVV solution developed in collaboration with Ellipse, which automatically changes the static, 3-digit CVV number on payment cards at each terminal transaction.

Features :

No battery and no clock timer are required. The CVV is updated at each EMV transaction and can be used for e-commerce transactions, with no POS terminal.

  1. Biometric Payment Solution

Complete Biometric-System-on-Card solution design with partners, enabling secure, fast, and convenient payments worldwide.

Features :

  • 40nm ST31N600 secure element & STM32L443 MCU
  • 35mm tape, module packaging from Linxens, Sensor module FPC-Tshape 2 from Fingerprint Cards
  • PRELAM in custom sheet format from Linxens
  1. Wearable Payment

Innovative payment solution with STPay application in Small form factor (2FF) of contactless module that could be mounted on wearable such as a watch, bracelet, keychain, etc.


  • 40nm ST31 certified hardware platform
  • Supports most of the main banking applications/ payment schemes
  • STPay ST Secure Payment solution
  1. ST25 NFC/RFID Tags

ST25T product family offers NFC/RFID ICs for contactless applications. They include short and long-range (ISO/IEC 14443 A/B & 15693) and feature EEPROM memory, from 512-bit to 64-Kbit.

Available in several user memory densities and with many key features, ST25T NFC tags target a wide variety of applications such as IoT objects and Smart homes & cities. This includes key markets like luxury, pharma, Healthcare & Wellness, Wine & Spirits, etc.

ST25TV Series

  • NFC Forum Type 5
  • Augmented NDEF
  • Password Mechanism
  • Tamper detect

ST25TN Series

  • NFC Forum Type 2
  • Augmented NDEF
  • Digital Signature
  • Kill Mode
  1. ST4SIM – eSIM solution for secure M2M and IoT applications

SIMs to GSMA-certified eSIMs, the ST4SIM portfolio includes solutions based on basic configurations (ST4SIM-100), as well as cryptographic (ST4SIM-110 / ST4SIM-111), GSMA SGP.02 (ST4SIM-200) and GSMA eSA (ST4SIM-201) configurations.

ST4SIM-S for IoT applications

  • JavaCardTM OS / GlobalPlatform® compliant
  • Configurable and customizable
  • Connectivity from trusted partners
  • Secure hardware ST32H480 and ST33G1M2
  • Large choice of form factor (card plug-in, DFN 4 x 4.2 mm, DFN 5 x 6 mm)

ST4SIM-M for M2M industrial applications

  • JavaCardTM OS / GlobalPlatform® compliant
  • Scalable solution: basic SIM to GSMA eSIM
  • Connectivity and platforms from trusted partners
  • Industrial grade (JEDEC JESD47)
  • Secure hardware ST32F512-M and ST33G1M2M
  • Large choice of form factor (card plug-in, DFN 5 x 6 mm, WLCSP)
  1. STM32MP13 MPU enabling strong security

STM32MP13 MPU demo for advanced security and point-of-sales applications.

A Successful End to a Successful Show

STMicroelectronics’ expertise in building smarter and sustainable solutions remains thorough and unmatched. Their Product showcase and respective Demos at the SmartTech Asia 2023 trade fair were major highlights for the visitors. Pretty sure next year will be more intense and intricate, with more technological breakthroughs to showcase.

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Challenges for BESS Communication: Climate Extremes, Real-time Responses, and Cybersecurity

Mon, 11/27/2023 - 08:44

The most talked about technology in the energy industry right now is large battery energy storage systems (BESSs). This technology is not just only about energy storage —it balances the supply and demand between renewable energy sources, power grids, and user needs. Therefore, a reliable communication system is very important for these three aspects to work well together.

The challenge of extreme climate conditions

Extreme weather events are happening more frequently now than they did in the past, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).  Heatwaves, particularly, are 2.8 times more likely to occur than in the previous decade. Such conditions not only put immense pressure on human life and agriculture but also on electronic communication products. Dramatic temperature fluctuations, sandstorms, and lightning strikes may cause communication equipment malfunctions, subsequently affecting the operation of BESS. Since these storage systems are often in remote areas, selecting highly durable, industrial-grade communication equipment that can withstand extreme environments is crucial.

The demand for real-time responses

As power grids become more advanced and require stricter management requirements, the quick charging and discharging characteristics of large battery energy storage devices are essential in balancing the grid. Take the UK’s national grid, for example, where the requirement for power auxiliary response time has been reduced from an initial 10 seconds to just 500 milliseconds. Some countries even hope that the newest storage batteries can achieve response times at the 100-millisecond level. This implies that future communication systems must have faster data transfer speeds, higher network bandwidth, and more reliable network redundancy designs to meet these demands.

Recent network security issues are a big concern

Cyberattacks on energy and power systems are increasing, and people are starting to pay more attention to data security. Many countries now regard the power grid system as national-level critical infrastructure, setting even higher cybersecurity standards. NERC’s “Security Integration Strategy” and EU’s “Network and Information Security Directive 2.0” are two examples of heightened security strategies. Thus, future BESS communication designs must enhance cybersecurity to counter the increasingly severe online threats.

To sum up, energy transition progress notwithstanding, BESSs face increasing challenges. In this intricate journey, a stable communication system is key. It must address extreme climate challenges, meet strict power auxiliary system demands, and enhance cybersecurity. Experiences tell us that the selection and design of communication systems should consider a variety of factors to ensure stable operations. Moving forward, BESS providers must continuously monitor these crucial areas, consistently optimizing the performance and reliability of their communication systems. To achieve sustainable energy solutions, large battery storage systems require effective design and implementation.

Moxa_Alvis_Chen_265_265ALVIS CHEN
Integrated Marketing Manager

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Understanding the Transient Electromagnetic Excitation Options

Mon, 11/27/2023 - 08:38

Walter Frei, Comsol

If you are modeling electrical signals that are varying arbitrarily in time, you can often use the computationally efficient Electric Currents interface in the COMSOL Multiphysics software to compute the response of the system via a time-dependent study. Although there are several different excitation options, we will usually want to think in terms of either an applied current signal or a voltage signal traveling along a transmission line. Let’s take a deeper look at why this is.


Here, we will look at the example used in our previous blog post, “Using Different Physics Interfaces for RF Electromagnetic Heating Models”: frequency-domain excitations of a coaxial cable inserted into a metal cavity filled with a sample of lossy dielectric material. We will use the same system and apply various types of transient signals to the coax as well as compare the Electric Currents physics interface with the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient physics interface, primarily in terms of computing the total dissipation within the material. The reason for comparing these two interfaces is that the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface solves the full vectorial form of Maxwell’s equations, whereas the Electric Currents interface solves for a simplified approximation of Maxwell’s equations by ignoring the magnetic fields and solving solely for the scalar electric potential. To reduce the computational cost of these examples, the model will be reduced to the 2D axisymmetric modeling plane, as shown in the schematic below.

1- Schematic of the model in the 2D axisymmetric modeling plane.1- Schematic of the model in the 2D axisymmetric modeling plane. Current Excitation

We begin with exciting the system via a prescribed current, with a variation in time, as shown in the figure below. The signal is initially zero, and then steps up to a maximum value, which is then maintained. It’s possible to apply smoothing to this step function, which will be considered later. The system starts in its unexcited state: the fields are initially zero everywhere. Given this initial condition and input signal, the transient system response should approach a nonzero steady-state solution after sufficient time, equivalent to a DC excitation of the system.

2- The applied signal is modulated via a Step function that steps up from zero to one at a nondimensional time of one. Note the option to include smoothing, which is currently disabled.

We will first build a model using the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface since this interface captures all resistive, capacitive, and inductive phenomena. This interface is different from the Electromagnetic Waves, Frequency Domain interface used previously, in that it does not include an Impedance Boundary Condition, as this boundary condition only has meaning in the frequency domain. Although it’s possible to explicitly model the metal leads, we will instead model all metallic parts as lossless, ideal conductors via the Perfect Electric Conductor boundary condition. This is justified, as it was previously shown that the losses in the metal are relatively negligible for this case.

3- Screenshot of the Lumped Port boundary condition, of type Coaxial, with a specified current pulse that varies in time.

We use the Lumped Port boundary condition, of type Coaxial, and specify a transient applied current. Note that the argument to the Step function is entered in nondimensionalized units. The total simulated timespan is 150 ns, with results saved every 1 ns. The plot below shows the voltage sensed at the Lumped Port boundary condition (within the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface, which is abbreviated as TEMW in the figure below). The curve shows the typical response we should expect from a resistive–capacitive system.

4- Plot of applied current and the measured voltage from the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface and the Electric Currents interface.4- Plot of applied current and the measured voltage from the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface and the Electric Currents interface.

The same situation is modeled with the Electric Currents interface, which considers only resistive and capacitive effects. In this interface, the Terminal boundary condition of type Current will inject the specified current at the inner conductor. The outer conductor and remaining exterior boundaries are all set to Ground. To compare solutions, the maximum solver time step is also set to 1 ns, and the results show excellent agreement.

5- Comparison of dissipation as computed from the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface and the Electric Currents interface.5- Comparison of dissipation as computed from the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface and the Electric Currents interface.

This plot shows a comparison of the deposited heat into the model over time for both physics’ interfaces, and shows agreement. We can also compute the integrated losses over time via the timeint() operator, which has the following syntax:

timeint(0,150e-9, intopSample(ec.Qh), ‘nointerp’),

where the added ‘nointerp’ option evaluates the time integral of the integration over the volume using solely the saved time steps, and both interfaces compute a total deposited energy of 46.8 nJ over this 0– 150 ns timespan, with less than a 1% difference. Based on this data, it’s possible to conclude that, for this system excited by this current signal, the Electric Currents interface will give nearly identical results as the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface, and at lower computational cost.

Voltage Excitations in Electric Currents

Next, let’s use the same step function but instead use it to modulate the Terminal Voltage within the Electric Currents interface. That is, we will try to instantly change the applied voltage between the inner and outer conductor of the coaxial cable. We can try to solve such a model, but it will actually lead to a solver failure. This should not be too surprising, since a capacitive device resists an instantaneous change in voltage. That is, the step input to the voltage is nonphysical.

Instead of trying to solve such a nonphysical excitation, we can go back to the Step function and enable smoothing. With this change, we can solve the model over a shorter timespan of 5 ns, with results saved every 0.01 ns, and with a tighter solver relative tolerance of 1e-5, as described in our “Controlling the Time-Dependent Solver Timesteps” knowledge base entry.

6- Computed current when the voltage is specified via a smoothed step function.6- Computed current when the voltage is specified via a smoothed step function.

This figure shows the applied voltage and the current through the terminal. Note that the current rises to over ten times the steady-state current as the applied voltage is rising. To understand this, examine the expression for the current, as defined within the Electric Currents interface:

This is the sum of the conduction current and displacement current, and the electric field is computed from . So, if the electric potential as a function of time is specified at a boundary, then both the conduction current and the displacement current into the model are specified, and that is nonphysical. Contrast this with the previous case of an applied current, where only the total current is specified, and the model computes what fraction of that total current is displacement current or conduction current.

We should also ask if it’s possible to apply an analogous boundary condition in the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface. This is not possible; this interface uses the magnetic vector potential formulation, which does not admit such an excitation condition. Even if it was possible via the numerical method, this type of excitation is not physically plausible since it would imply a kind of feedback control problem.

It’s still valid to use the voltage excitation in the Electric Currents interface in the time domain, but only in those specific cases where the resultant displacement current at the terminal boundary is relatively much smaller than the conduction current. That is, use the voltage boundary condition only for those cases where the device is almost purely resistive. The case we’re looking at here, though, requires that we look to a more realistic boundary condition.

Transmission Lines, Lumped Ports, and Terminated Terminal Conditions

Within the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface, let’s now take another look at the Lumped Port boundary condition. The Current type was already discussed, and the Circuit type will be discussed later, so we will now focus on the Cable type. The Cable option presents the ability to define a voltage signal and a cable impedance. This gives us a condition that can be understood in the context of an infinite lossless transmission line of specified impedance, for example , with a source placed along the infinite cable. This source imposes a current such that a signal propagates in both directions along the transmission line away from the source, and such that the sensed voltage will be equal to the defined signal. Since the signal propagates in both directions, the magnitude of this imposed current is This is based on the specified voltage signal, V(t), and the specified cable impedance — assuming that the system impedance matches the cable impedance. In actuality, the cable impedance will be different from the system impedance, Zs, so the signal will be partially reflected by the system model and back into the transmission line. So, the input signal is entered at this boundary in terms of voltage, but in actuality imposes a fixed current as well as a parallel load equal to the cable impedance. We can think of the signal coming from the current source as being split into the cable and system, with some fraction of that signal reflected back. In most real sources, there would be some kind of circulator or isolator that would prevent the reflected signal from interacting with the current source, and divert the reflected signal to a matched dissipative load.

The circuit equivalent interpretation of the Lumped Port boundary condition, of type Cable. The top figure shows the assumed case: The signal propagates from the current source into the cable and system, of matched impedance. The source sits within the cable, so the signal propagates in both directions. The bottom figure shows the modeled case: The mismatched impedance of the system leads to a fraction of the signal being reflected back into the cable.

The analogous boundary condition within the Electric Currents interface is the Terminal condition of type Terminated. Here, we can similarly input a cable impedance, but instead need to apply a power, rather than voltage, where the power is .

The model can be solved using finer output time steps and tolerances for both physics. The results can be evaluated in terms of measured voltage and current as well as losses and integrated losses over time, as shown below. There are several features to remark on:

  1. The sensed voltage and current from the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface shows ripples, or waves, in the signal. This is expected. These ripples are due to the frequency content of the input signal and also arise due to reflections of the signal from the materials, boundary conditions, and geometry of the system model.
  2. The sensed voltage is nearly twice the applied voltage. This is due to the fact that this boundary condition can also be thought of as a Norton equivalent of a voltage source, but with a Norton resistance equal to the cable impedance, which, in this case, is relatively small compared to the resistance of the system being modeled.
  3. The solution from the Electric Currents interface does not have any ripples since this interface explicitly ignores the inductive effects, but the overall shape is very similar and gives the same steady-state solution.
  4. The losses agree well, and the total deposited energy agrees to within 1%.

We can thus conclude that the Electric Currents interface is a very good approximation of the full Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface, for this system and excitation type.

Plot of measured voltage and measured current when modeling an applied smoothed step voltage signal propagating along a transmission line.


Comparison of computed losses with the sample material when a smoothed step voltage signal is applied.

Electrical Circuit Connections

Looking at the circuit diagram in the previous figure, it appears as if the Lumped Port, of type Cable, represents a resistor attached to the system. We could check this interpretation by instead using the Lumped Port, of type Circuit, and adding a lumped current source and a lumped resistor in parallel with the system via the Electrical Circuits interface. The approach of connecting these physics interfaces is similar to what was shown in our blog post “Understanding the Excitation Options for Modeling Electric Currents”. This same excitation can be reproduced by connecting the Electric Currents interface to the Electrical Circuits interface via the Terminal condition of type Circuit.

A more complex matching circuit, including capacitors, inductors, and transformers, could also be implemented in the Electrical Circuit interface. It can be reasonable to use a voltage source feature within the Electrical Circuits interface as long as the additional elements are added to the circuit to prevent any kind of nonphysical excitation. Nonlinear lumped devices, diodes and transistors, can also be included, although these will result in a set of equations that are more computationally intensive to solve, and might require further modification of solver settings.

A Quick Word About Deposited Power

Looking back on the blog post about frequency-domain excitations of this system, we also implemented an excitation that would deposit a known power into the system. This type of excitation is based on feedback, meaning that it monitors some state of the model and feeds information back to the input. Such feedback is reasonable in a frequency-domain model, under the implicit assumption that the feedback happens over several cycles. It’s much less motivated for a time-domain model, where any feedback would also have to include the dynamics and delay of the control system. Such time-domain feedback is not motivated for systems and timespans similar to what we have looked at here.

Closing Remarks

We’ve looked at various ways of exciting a system with a time-domain signal within both the Electric Currents interface and the Electromagnetic Waves, Transient interface. For the particular system and the signal that was being considered, these two interfaces produce very similar results. The Electric Currents interface is appropriate when the electric energy in the excited system is much greater than the magnetic energy. The alternate case, when the system is primarily inductive and the magnetic fields are much greater than the electric fields, will be looked at separately in a future blog post.

We have seen that all excitations are fundamentally specifying the current going into the system model. The case of a voltage signal propagating along a transmission line is simply a Norton equivalent: a current source with an external resistance — representing the transmission line — parallel to the system model. Ultimately, the choice between these excitation options representing a current source, a voltage signal propagating along a transmission line, or adding an Electrical Circuit interface depends on the type of source that you are working with.

The signals that have been looked at here are quite simple, but we often need to consider more complicated transient signals, and especially signals that are periodic. Such signals lend themselves to some very efficient modeling techniques, which will be addressed in a following article, so stay tuned!

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Quickly connect your smart factory to the cloud with a lightweight industrial control gateway

Mon, 11/27/2023 - 08:00

Courtesy : Nuvoton

The demand and concept of smart factories have been growing rapidly in recent years; industrial automation and industrial IoT have become popular practices. The various data information during the production process of production lines can bring rich values to enterprises as manufacturers can analyze the production line data to reduce maintenance costs, grasping keys to improving efficiency. Cloud application service vendors provide customers with data storage, analysis, computation, remote and real-time monitoring services.

In order to achieve the goals described above, industrial customers are provided with a quick and easy networking option: Nuvoton released IIOT smart factory quick networking solutions based on the NuMicro M48xxIDAE series. The NuMicro M48xxIDAE series adopted the Cortex-M4 core and provides up to 192MHz of computing speed; it supports sufficient memory resources with 512KB Flash and 160KB SRAM built-in and also has large amounts of analog and digital components integrated. It is suitable for smart gateway needs of different scenarios to help manufacturers collect the sensor data of the various production nodes, and upload the data to cloud servers for analysis.

The M48xxIDAE series provide rich peripheral interfaces; its external ports include 1 10/100 Mbps Ethernet port, 1 high-speed USB, 1 full-speed USB, 2 CAN buses, 6 UARTs, 3 ISO7816/UART, 2 USCI interfaces (can be flexibly set to UART/SPI/I2C), 3 I2Cs, 4 SPI/I2S, 1 QSPI, 1 I2S, 1 EBI, 24-channel PWM, 12-bit 5MSPS ADC with up to 16 channels, 2 12-bit 1MSPS DAC and two sets of analog comparators, able to connect various types of data collection devices on IoT terminals.

After the lightweight industrial control gateway based on the M48xxIDAE series collect the data from factory sensor terminals through UART, SPI, I2C and CAN, and other peripherals, the data is sent to the cloud through Ethernet (wired network) or wireless transmission. Finally, users can use computers or mobile APPs to perform real-time remote monitoring on the status of the factory.

In order to provide customers with more varieties of cloud connection options, the M48xxIDAE series supports multiple real-time operating systems, including Mbed OS, Amazon FreeRTOS, RT Thread, Ali OS Things, etc. It can also connect to the internet through HTTPS, MQTT, CoAP, and other different protocols, and its corresponding cloud terminals include Arm Pelion, Amazon Web Service (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Alibaba Cloud. Nuvoton further provides related networking sample codes, able to reduce the time needed for the customers’ engineering development.

In order to provide customers with convenience for engineering development, Nuvoton provided the NK-IOTM487 IoT development platform based on the M48xxIDAE series. This development platform supports 1 Ethernet port, and can also support wireless networking functions such as NB-IoT and LTE-4G through expansion modules. The M48xxIDAE series’ built-in hardware encryption and decryption engine can realize algorithms including AES, SHA, and ECC to encrypt and protect the data uploaded to the cloud, and further improve the performance of the overall system.

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Comparing common MCU interface protocols

Mon, 11/27/2023 - 07:54

Microcontrollers (MCUs) continue to dominate embedded systems development and with good reason. They have a flexible architecture, are easy to program and exhibit low-power characteristics.

Now over 40 years old, the MCU continues evolving to meet changing market demands. Example: Using MCUs for edge-based Artificial Intelligence (AI) is trending in Internet of Things (IoT) and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) applications.

MCUs perform essential computational functions. They also communicate with and coordinate peripheral functions, such as sensors and wired/wireless transceiver ICs or modules. Some application requirements are more straightforward, like reading a switch to determine whether it is on or off or controlling an LED. Others require a more sophisticated interface allowing multiple peripherals to be serviced from a single port.

Achieving this requires some standardization. MUCs are typically equipped with two types of interfaces: industry-standard serial buses and more generic pin-based input and output pins, or general purpose I/O (GPIO). While smaller devices may only offer limited I/O, many high-pin-count MCUs can integrate six or more serial peripherals and tens of GPIO.

Serial bus communication interfaces

The most popular MCU serial connections are inter-integrated circuit (I2C), serial peripheral interface (SPI) and universal asynchronous receiver transmitter/universal synchronous asynchronous receiver transmitter (UART/USART). These standard technologies enable data transfer between peripheral components in and between embedded systems using well defined communication protocols and physical interfaces.

It has become common to integrate a serial interface into micro-electromechanical system (MEMS) sensors. A MEMS accelerometer may be equipped with an I2C or SPI bus interface so it can easily interface with a host controller. The sensor may include a deeply embedded MCU or application-specific IC (ASIC) that manages the digital domain. This digital element will interact with the physical MEMS element, transform the raw data into recognized formats, and manage communication with the embedded host MCU. Usually, all the connected devices are mounted on a single PCB, but most serial buses accommodate short-distance interconnect via suitable connections.

The I2C bus

The I2C bus is a widely used synchronous half-duplex open-drain serial communication interface developed by Philips (now NXP) Semiconductors in the early 1980s. It can support multiple controllers, such as MCUs, and multiple targets, such as sensors, wireless modules, and DC/DC converters, over relatively short distances of up to 30 cm. The I2C interface requires two wires–serial data (SDA) for data communication between the controller and target(s) and serial clock (SCL) for a shared clock signal to synchronize controller/target communication. The two-pin topology makes it simple and convenient to implement I2C and many applications use it in imaginative ways.

The controller always initiates communication with a single target device, identified by a 7-bit address, permitting a maximum of 128 slave addresses on a single I2C bus. It is less common but possible to use 10-bit addresses. This allows more devices to be accessed and may be required in larger systems. The I2C protocol uses a standard data packet format, including start and stop bits, target address, a read/write bit, 8-bit data frames, and acknowledge/no acknowledge (ACK/NACK) bits.

The I2C protocol standard supports multiple communication speeds, including standard mode (100 kilobits per second), fast mode (400 kilobits per second), high-speed mode (3.4 megabits per second), and ultra-fast mode (5 megabits per second).

The SPI bus

The SPI bus is also a multi-target synchronous serial interface, but unlike I2C, it operates in full-duplex mode and permits only a single controller. The target address selection occurs through a dedicated pin, sometimes termed Chip Select (CS). Each target device requires a unique select signal and accommodating full-duplex operation requires separate transmit and receive lines, making SPI slightly more complex to implement than I2C.

The SPI bus has four defined signals with defined names. However, some products use non-standard names. The signal names are:

  • SCK: the clock used to synchronize communication; sometimes written as SCLK, SCL or CLK
  • MOSI (master out slave input): data from master to slave; sometimes SDO on controllers, SDI on target devices
  • MISO (master in slave output): data from slave to master; sometimes SDI on controllers, SDO on target devices
  • SS, CS or CE: the target (chip) select line; one required for each connected target

There are no defined transfer rates; with data transferred in 8-bit blocks bit by bit, the maximum speed is more determined by the distance, with 50 MHz speeds possible over short IC-to-IC distances. Unlike I2C, the SPI protocol does not feature ACK/NACK or flow control start/stop bits.

The UART interface

The UART interface is one of the simplest standardized communication protocols to implement in an embedded system. It requires just two connections (transmit and receive) to achieve a full-duplex link. Unlike SPI and I2C, UART does not use a clock signal to synchronize communication. The UART protocol frames eight data bits with a start bit, a stop bit, and a parity bit. The parity bit, either odd or even, provides error checking while the start and stop bits coordinate packet framing.

The most significant disadvantage to the UART interface is that it can only support communication between two devices. There is no hierarchy. The maximum UART data rate, termed the baud rate, is similar to I2C, but in practice, speeds of 115,200 baud (similar to bits per second) are popular. A UART interface can transfer data much further than I2C or SPI at these slower speeds and is extremely simple to implement.

Programming and debug support of serial interfaces

Configuring an MCU serial bus interface is typically achieved through an integrated development environment (IDE). Vendor tools or third-part IDEs can manage the pin assignments, data rates and other protocol framing parameters. Most toolchains provide a high-level abstraction of the interface’s low-level functionality, significantly easing the programming burden for the developer.

When debugging an embedded design, a logic analyzer or a mixed signal oscilloscope equipped with a protocol decoding function can be a great asset.

MCU interfaces take many forms

Designers shouldn’t underestimate the importance of GPIO. Although GPIO are normally treated as individual ports, some MCUs can be configured to treat them as software-defined serial buses. This can avoid the need for external bus expanders. GPIO could also be used to drive other types of transceivers, such as communicating over an infrared optical link using a standard or proprietary protocol.

As the name suggests, GPIO is highly versatile and the primary method for connecting simple peripherals that don’t have the benefit of a formal serial bus interface. This includes LEDs, single switches or switch matrices. Individual MCU pins can be used to create simple user interfaces by toggling an LED or reading the status of a switch. They can also be configured to drive more complex user interfaces through dedicated controllers.

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AEC-Q200-certified automotive magnetic solutions

Mon, 11/27/2023 - 07:22

Arrow Electronics

The continued electrification and technification of automobiles and trucks creates strong demand for new and better components. In this article, learn how parts and systems from Yageo Group have been proven to work in the lab and in the field for next-generation automotive applications.


For decades, KEMET has enabled safer, more efficient, and smarter vehicles by offering a wide range of products for the automotive industry. KEMET provides automotive-grade components that are designed with safer failure mechanisms and qualified to industry standards, such as AEC-Q200 and VW AUDI 80808. These parts have been proven on the road and in the lab, and boast an extensive track record of reliability. This lineup of automotive-grade products are verified to work under harsh temperatures ranging from -50ºC to 175ºC.

Magnetics Selection

EMC Solutions

KEMET EMC Solutions

Automotive Systems

KEMET EMC Solutions

Automotive Drive Train

Automotive Drive Train

Battery Management System (BMS)

KEMET Battery Management System

In large battery pack applications with daisy chain connections, the number of cells connected in series is very high, and the large voltage differences demand component-to-component isolation. The serial communication links between boards must be isolated by transformer coupling circuits instead of capacitor coupling. KEMET & Pulse Electronics offer a full line of products for safety isolation, noise suppression and communications including high voltage isolation transformers, BMS transformers, common mode chokes, ethernet magnetics as well as wireless antenna options.

On-Board Charger (OBC)

KEMET On Board Charger OBC

The On-Board Charger (OBC) is a sophisticated high-voltage power supply that converts the AC power from the charging source to the DC voltage required to charge battery packs in an EV or HEV vehicle. Efficiency of the system is critical to minimize charging times and ensure operation within thermal limits. The power magnetics within the system are a combination of off-the-shelf standard magnetics and highly engineered customized solutions to maximize performance.

DC/ DC Conversion

KEMET DC DC Conversion

The high-power DC-DC converter is used to change the high-voltage (200-800Vdc) from the battery pack to the lower voltage (12v-48v) that is used to power the automotive sub-systems. As in the OBC, efficiency of the system is critical to ensure maximum battery utilization. Isolation within the DC-DC converter is also critical to ensure that sensitive low-voltage systems are not damaged and to ensure user-accessible systems are safe. KEMET & Pulse design and manufacture a wide range of lower-power catalog components (current sensing and isolation transformers) and high-power customized components (DCDC transformer and output inductor).

High Voltage Inverters

KEMET High Voltage Inverters

The inverter uses high-power IGBTs or switches to change the high DC voltage battery pack energy into an AC signal to drive and control the AC motor. Through regenerative braking the inverter can also use the braking energy to charge the battery pack. The inverter is critical to vehicle operation and handles significant amounts of power (Up to 100kW) and it is necessary to isolate multiple high-voltage nodes to ensure safe operation. Pulse designs and manufactures UL-approved isolation transformers as well as the magnetics used in the auxiliary power supply and signal I/O.

Pulse-Network PBU Products

Pulse Network PBU Products

Pulse-Network PBU for Automotive

Pulse Network PBU for Automotive

Pulse-Power PBU Products

Pulse Power PBU Products

Pulse-Power PBU for Automotive

Pulse - Power PBU for Automotive

Pulse-Automotive PBU Products

Pulse Automotive PBU Product

Pulse-Wireless PBU Product

Pulse Wireless PBU Product

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Infineon Unveils Cutting-Edge TEGRION Innovations and Pioneering Security Solutions at TRUSTECH 2023

Sat, 11/25/2023 - 12:47

Infineon Technologies AG is set to showcase the latest addition to its TEGRION family at TRUSTECH, a prominent tradeshow for innovative payment and identification solutions. The TEGRION SLC26G, a security controller designed for demanding identity and government ID applications, promises next-level security, efficiency, and performance.
The TEGRION SLC26G facilitates the swift implementation of operating systems and corresponding applications in ePassports, national eIDs, and eHealth Care systems. It ensures the highest levels of security, speed, and power efficiency, crucial for government ID applications. Featuring Very High Bit Rates (VHBR) for ultra-fast contactless communication, this advancement integrates Infineon’s 28 nm technology, meeting stringent security standards.

Moreover, Infineon, in collaboration with Bundesdruckerei GmbH and Fraunhofer Institute for Applied and Integrated Security (AISEC), presents a groundbreaking demonstrator for an electronic passport designed to withstand the security challenges posed by quantum computing. This marks a significant stride in Post Quantum Cryptography (PQC), ensuring contactless data transmission between the ePassport and border control terminal remains secure.

Visitors to the mini airport booth can experience the convenience of seamless payment with SECORA Pay X, demonstrated in a pop-up manicure salon designed for contactless payment. Infineon is also partnering with Fingerprints to develop SECORA Pay Bio, enhancing biometric payment cards for faster and more hygienic transactions.
In a unique display of innovation, a pop-up fingernail salon at the Infineon booth, presented by Smart Chip Switzerland, offers attendees the chance to test the SECORA Pay X solution directly on their fingernails for on-the-go payment. The booth will also showcase various wearable payment devices, such as rings, bracelets, key fobs, and watches, all equipped with products from the SECORA Pay or SECORA Connect solution families.

Furthermore, Infineon introduces the CALYPSO move, the first secured memory for simple contactless ticketing based on the Calypso base specification. Addressing the growing demand for digital ticketing in public transport, CALYPSO’s move offers an open standard for secure, convenient, and interoperable ticketing solutions. Attendees can explore a CALYPSO move sample card at the Infineon booth during TRUSTECH.

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STMicroelectronics Highlights Innovations in Electronics and Technology at electronica India 2023

Fri, 11/24/2023 - 05:30

electronica India – a major show for electronic components, systems, and applications took place from 13-15 September 2023 in Bengaluru. The show was successful in bringing cutting-edge technologies and innovations from across the globe under one roof.

STMicroelectronics made headlines in showcasing their latest innovations in the electronics and technology domain at Booth EB11, Hall 5.

A Competitive Range at Display

ST showcased its advanced technologies and solutions around Smart Mobility, Power Energy, and IoT connectivity.

ELE Times interacted with STMicroelectronics to understand the key demos at display.

Sensing solutions

  • ASM330LHHX IMU sensor for automotive applications
  • STEVAL-MKI109V3 MEMS motherboard
  • MEMS sensor-based condition monitoring for industrial applications
  • STEVAL-MKBOXPRO multipurpose evaluation kit

Watch the demonstration by Chen Hong Chao, Product Marketing and Application Manager, STMicroelectronics, Singapore, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cNQNQk_EV8g

IoT & Connectivity

  • Page EEPROM
  • STSAFE secure element
  • Edge AI solutions using ST products
  • NanoEdge AI for anomaly detection
  • Surface recognition vacuum cleaner
  • People counting
  • SensorTile.box 2.5 W wireless charging
  • WBC for smartwatches STDEMO-WERWBC22A
  • Matter: the foundation for connected things
  • Multi-connectivity asset tracking reference design STEVAL-ADSTRA1B with a cloud dashboard
  • Hand posture demo using ToF sensor VL53L8CX
  • eYs3D stereo camera based on VD56G3 imagers
  • Touchless control (Ranging/Posture) by VL53L8CX Multizone ToF Sensor
  • eYs3D 3D Stereo-Vision Camera for machine vision based on ST VD56G3 Imagers

Watch the demonstration by Vincent Lin, Technical Marketing Manager – AMS IMAGING, STMicroelectronics, APeC, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QyFapNTY3L4

Watch the demonstration by Indar Prakash Singhal, Principal Engineer – SRA-SAIL, STMicroelectronics, India, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gY5deVPTrY4

Power & Energy

  • Smart factory automation demo
  • 250 W motor driver solution for fridge BLDC compressor
  • 30 KW SiC MOSFET Vienna rectifier PFC solution with STM32G4 for EV chargers

Watch the demonstration by Satish Pandurang Pawar, Technical Marketing Manager, STMicroelectronics, India, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ma7Ra4WlLoc

STM32 microcontrollers and microprocessors

  • Secure demo for people counting
  • AWS green grass demo
  • Outstanding graphics on STM32U5 MCU
  • Cost-effective graphic solutions on STM32
  • STM32 Local Voice UI solution
  • STM32C0 demo: your next 8-bit MCU is a 32-bit!
  • STM32U5 ultra-low-power series
  • STM32H5 high-performance series
  • Multisensor platform for STM32 MPUs

Watch the demonstration by P K Jena, Senior Manager FAE (Wireless), STMicroelectronics, India, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mZ6fWq6jek

Smart Mobility

  • Adaptive Front Lighting demo kit
  • Automotive AI on the edge
  • Integrated Stereo AVAS Solution
  • Traction Controller
  • TFT Cluster
  • Two-wheeler EFI ECU
  • Battery management system
  • Driver Monitoring System VB56G4A image sensor

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Infineon Unveils Game-Changing 62mm CoolSiC Module: Pioneering the Future of Power Semiconductor Technology

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 13:59

Infineon Technologies has taken a significant leap forward in power semiconductor technology with the expansion of its CoolSIC 1200V and 2000V MOSFET module families, introducing a cutting-edge 62mm industry-standard package. This revolutionary device, employing a half-bridge topology, is built on the advanced M1H silicon carbide (SiC) MOSFET technology.

The M1H technology introduces a broader gate voltage window, significantly enhancing robustness against voltage spikes at the gate caused by driver and layout influences. This improvement is particularly impactful at high switching frequencies, enabling the use of SiC in mid-power applications starting from 250kW.

This range is of utmost relevance where traditional silicon with insulated-gate bipolar transistor (IGBT) technology faces limitations in terms of power density. With this innovative technology, the scope of applications extends beyond that of a standard 62mm IGBT module. The expanded range spans sectors such as solar energy, servers, energy storage, electric vehicle chargers, traction, commercial induction cooking, and various power conversion systems.

The module boasts minimal switching and transmission losses, thereby reducing the need for extensive cooling systems. Paired with high reverse voltage capabilities, these devices align with the requirements of modern system design. The CoolSiC chip technology contributes to the increased efficiency of converters, allowing for a higher nominal power per inverter and reduced overall system costs.

Designed for durability, the device’s packaging features a baseplate and screw connections optimized for maximum system availability, minimal service costs, and reduced downtime losses. It exhibits a high thermal cycling capacity and operates continuously at a temperature of 150°C.

The symmetrical internal design of the package ensures identical switching conditions for both the upper and lower switches, ensuring optimal performance. Moreover, users have the option to further enhance thermal performance by applying a pre-applied thermal interface material (TIM).

Infineon’s introduction of the 62mm CoolSiC Module marks a significant stride toward increased efficiency and reliability in power semiconductor technology. With applications spanning diverse sectors, from renewable energy to electric vehicles, this innovation promises to reshape the landscape of power conversion systems. As industries seek more efficient and cost-effective solutions, Infineon’s cutting-edge technology stands poised to meet these evolving demands, offering a glimpse into the future of power electronics.

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Elfonze Technologies’ Pune Centre – A Beacon of Technological Excellence Amidst the Oxford of the East

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 12:35

Elfonze Technologies is thrilled to announce the inauguration of its state-of-the-art Pune centre on November 25, 2023. Nestled in the heart of a city revered as the Oxford of the East, this centre is a testament to Elfonze’s vision of harnessing local expertise to forge global pathways in IT and Connected Supply Chain Services for industries across various domains.

As a melting pot of culture, education, and technology, Pune represents the ideal locale for Elfonze’s expansion, mirroring the company’s ethos of diversity, learning, and innovation. Celebrating an impressive trajectory of 400% growth and over 50 global clients, Elfonze is poised to leverage Pune’s dynamic talent pool to scale new heights in technology solutions.

The Pune centre will not only enhance Elfonze’s service capabilities but will also serve as an incubator for cutting-edge research and development. It’s a hub where traditional wisdom coalesces with futuristic innovation, enabling Elfonze to offer comprehensive IT services, Consulting, and turnkey projects with a focus on Oracle Suite and digital technologies.

Marking this landmark occasion, Elfonze Technologies will host a pioneering job fair on November 26th and 27th, specifically targeting the vibrant pool of IT and electronics professionals in Pune. This initiative reaffirms Elfonze’s dedication to fostering local talent and contributing to the city’s reputation as a cradle of technological advancement.

Elfonze Technologies invites aspirants to join its growing family which now boasts a robust network of over 200 employees and extensive institutional and channel partnerships. The Pune centre promises to be a bastion of creativity, collaboration, and tech-driven progress.

Embrace the opportunity to be part of a globally recognized leader right in your city. Be at the forefront of innovation with Elfonze Technologies, where the future is not just imagined but engineered.

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Texas Instruments and Agastya Foundation conduct state-level quiz to encourage Karnataka Government school students to pursue STEM learning

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 12:06

Texas Instruments (TI) India today announced the winners of a state-level science and technology quiz for grades 6 and 7, aimed at cultivating interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) subjects among government school students in Karnataka. Named Vaakovaakyam, this fourth edition of the quiz saw participation from more than 42,000 students from 700 schools. GHPS Bommanahalli, Bangalore rural district, won the competition, followed by GMPS BEO Yelahanka, Bangalore North district, and Adarsh Vidyalaya Shapura, Yadgiri district, in second and third positions, respectively, out of 14 schools that qualified for the finals.

“At TI, we recognize the value of access to education in building strong communities and equipping the workforce of tomorrow,” said Santhosh Kumar, managing director and president, Texas Instruments India. “Effective STEM programs such as Vaakovaakyam serve to supplement science classroom learning and allow students to explore the world of science and technology. In addition, STEM programs can help students develop their curiosity, critical thinking, and creative problem-solving skills,” he added.

Introducing basic STEM concepts at an early age fosters creativity, nurtures innovation, and equips students with the background knowledge to pursue higher education in these and other domains. TI India’s science and technology quiz, in association with Agastya International Foundation, aims to spark interest in STEM subjects and provide a fun and competitive avenue for learning in this field.

TI India has been spearheading STEM education initiatives across grade levels for over 15 years, regularly updating them to keep up with the changing needs of science education. These STEM initiatives include the TI Master of Science (MS) Analog Program with IIT Madras; TI STEM resources, which is a collection of free STEM and coding activities for teachers and students; the Women in Semiconductor Hardware (WiSH) internship; and other programs in partnership with engineering colleges across India. In addition to the company’s sponsorship, TI employees actively volunteer to help coordinate these programs and engage with participating students.

The winning students received educational scholarships of INR 27,000, INR 21,000, and INR 15,000 for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places respectively. The guiding teachers received ‘Make your own lab’ (MYOL) kits, and 5 days of training at Agastya Foundation’s campus in Kuppam, Andhra Pradesh to enable them to make low-cost and simple models that can help explain science concepts to their students. The winning schools also received science kits worth INR 50,000, INR 40,000, and INR 30,000 for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place respectively, and smart televisions for STEM education training.

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Messe Muenchen India and SEMI join forces to host SEMICON India

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 11:48

• The partnership augments the efforts by the government of India to propel India’s semiconductor ecosystem.

• SEMICON India will be collocated with electronica India and productronica India.

Messe München India, the Indian subsidiary of Messe München GmbH and a leading organizer of trade fairs in India, and SEMI, the global industry association advancing growth for 3,000 member companies and helping the semiconductor industry deploy lifechanging tech worldwide, have officially inked a monumental agreement. The partnership heralds the collaboration to host SEMICON India, in colocation with electronica India and productronica India thereby creating Southeast Asia’s single largest platform for showcasing the latest advancements in electronics and semiconductor industry.

The collaboration comes in the wake of the earlier announcements by the India Semiconductor Mission (ISM) at the SemiconIndia 2023 event in Gandhinagar and subsequently at the curtain raiser of SEMICON India during electronica India and productronica India 2023 in Bengaluru and signals a significant stride in advancing India’s domestic semiconductor ecosystem and connecting it to the global industry.

India has emerged as an attractive destination for semiconductor manufacturing and sourcing due to its rapidly expanding domestic market, demand for new-age electronics including electric vehicles, and a fast-developing supply chain for machinery, components, assembly, testing, and many other specialised products and services. Creating a frugal supply chain for semiconductor manufacturing in India is the need of the hour.

Giving a sense of the opportunities that await participants at SEMICON India, Bhupinder Singh, CEO, Messe Muenchen India, said, “India’s demand for semiconductors is valued at $24 billion today, and this is likely to emerge as a $110 billion opportunity by 2030. This explains the initiatives by global semiconductor companies to enter the Indian market. As the organisers of South Asia’s largest trade fair for electronics manufacturing – electronica India and productronica India, we are excited to work with SEMI to host SEMICON India. It will be a vital event for the semiconductor industry in India, providing a platform for companies across the semiconductor ecosystem to showcase their latest products and technologies, and to network with potential customers and partners. We are confident that SEMICON India will play a key role in advancing the domestic semiconductor ecosystem.”

Regarding SEMICON India, Ajit Manocha, President and CEO, SEMI, said, “Considering the inherent strengths of the Indian economy, the government’s India Semiconductor Mission is an open invitation to the world to make and source semiconductors in India. From policy support to talent availability and attractive demand, India has all the elements for success in semiconductor design and manufacturing. What the country needs today is a mature and resilient supply chain that can respond to the exponential demand. SEMICON India will be a place for all stakeholders to come together and build win-win partnerships to develop the ecosystem in India. Thus, we are excited to host SEMICON India with our longstanding partners Messe München.”

SEMICON India will give Indian semiconductor and electronics companies access to global semiconductor and electronics manufacturing and design supply chain, thereby integrating the upstream and downstream value chains for semiconductors. Additionally, it will provide a platform for stakeholder participation in critical initiatives across areas including Workforce Development, Sustainability and Supply Chain Management to advance industry growth.

About this collaboration with SEMI, Dr Reinhard Pfeiffer, CEO, Messe München, said, “Today, global manufacturers are looking to diversify their supply chains, and India offers the world a unique opportunity in this regard. We have had a successful partnership with SEMI in hosting SEMICON Europa in Munich, and the decision to jointly host SEMICON India is a natural extension of this partnership. SEMICON India promises to be a high-energy meeting place of ideas and innovators from the global industry, and I am very excited to see this platform contributing towards the development of the ecosystem in India.”

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Renesas Introduces 32-bit RX MCU with High-Speed, High-Precision Analog Front End for High-End Industrial Sensor Systems

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 11:30

New RX23E-B Boasts x8 Faster Data Rates Than the Existing Edition and Includes a 125 kSPS Delta-Sigma A/D Converter

Renesas Electronics Corporation, a premier supplier of advanced semiconductor solutions, has expanded its 32-bit microcontroller (MCU) offering with a new RX device for high-end industrial sensor systems. The latest addition, the RX23E-B, is a 32-bit device from its popular RX Family featuring a high-precision analog front end (AFE), specifically designed for systems that demand fast and accurate analog signal measurements.

The new MCU integrates a 24-bit Delta-Sigma A/D converter capable of achieving a conversion speed of up to 125 kSPS (125,000 samples/second) — eight times faster than the existing RX23E-A. It can process accurate A/D conversion while reducing RMS noise to 1/3 (0.18µVrms @1kSPS) when compared to the RX23E-A. The RX23E-B facilitates faster and more precise measurements of critical parameters such as strain, temperature, pressure, flow rate, current and voltage, making it ideal for high-end sensor devices, measuring instruments, and test equipment. In particular, the RX23E-B offers sufficient performance to drive force sensors used in industrial robots, which often demand measurements as fast as 10 µsec (100,000 samples/second). The MCU also reduces overall system size and the component count by incorporating the AFE and the MCU on a single chip.

“With the addition of the RX23E-B which comes with an AFE sensor interface, we can now serve a broad range of sensing applications from mid- to high-end systems,” said Sakae Ito, Vice President of the IoT Platform Business Division at Renesas. “We will continue to extend our product options to meet the growing needs of battery-powered and wireless sensors that demand low power consumption.”

“At Meiko Electronics, we have been developing evaluation boards and providing design support to our customers since the RX23E-A product was introduced,” said Takatsugu Nemoto, President at Meiko Electronics. “Now, with the introduction of the RX23E-B with a high-speed delta-sigma A/D converter, we anticipate many customers will be able to experience the benefits of its enhanced conversion performance, compact board design and reduced component count.”

Similar to the RX23E-A, the RX23E-B incorporates a 32-MHz RXv2-based CPU with digital signal processing (DSP) instructions and a floating point unit (FPU), and combines the AFE into a single chip using the same fabrication process. It offers new peripheral functions such as a 16-bit D/A converter, which enables measurement adjustments, self-diagnosis, and analog signal output. The device’s +/-10V analog input enables +/-10V measurement with a 5V power supply without requiring external components or additional power supply. An LCD controller with a maximum of 40 SEG x 4 COM and a real-time clock (RTC) function are also included.

In large-scale instruments that need to control and take measurements of multiple targets such as robot arms, gas and liquid analyzers, there has been a significant demand for distributed processing architecture. In distributed processing design, instead of relying on a dedicated MCU to manage all functions, each function can operate as a separate module, responsible for tasks such as motor control, sensor measurement and temperature control. This modular approach allows for independent development, offers greater design flexibility and simplifies maintenance. As each module needs an MCU for calculations, engineers can develop sensor modules more easily using an MCU with a built-in AFE, than combining a discrete AFE chip and a separate MCU.

The RX23E-B offers a version that supports an A/D conversion data rate of up to 125 kSPS, and a version that supports up to 31.25 kSPS. Both products offer flexible data rate settings ranging from 3.8 SPS to the maximum value, allowing users to choose the best balance between data rate and noise for their specific system requirements. The products are available in a 5.5 mm square 100-pin BGA package and a 6 mm square 40-pin QFN package for compact applications, as well as wide pin packages ranging from 48- to 100-pin options.

Winning Combinations

Renesas has combined the new RX23E-B MCU, designed for precise pressure measurement and control, with intelligent power devices tasked with driving solenoid valves, to develop the high-speed Pressure Control Solution. The integrated high-precision AFE provides precise pressure control and minimizes the component count for the design which reduces the BOM costs and board mounting area. These Winning Combinations are technically vetted system architectures from mutually compatible devices that work together seamlessly to bring an optimized, low-risk design for faster time to market. Renesas offers more than 400 Winning Combinations with a wide range of products from the Renesas portfolio to enable customers to speed up the design process and bring their products to market more quickly. More information can be found at renesas.com/win.

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SECORA Pay security solution “lights up” payment cards with LEDs to enhance contactless payment experience

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 11:15

Enabled by increasingly powerful technologies the convenience of tap and pay is being widely adopted, fueling the rise of contactless payments worldwide. In addition, contactless technologies are inspiring new and innovative form factors that support additional functions beyond payment. The SECORA Pay security solution from Infineon Technologies AG  takes this development into account and supports card inlays with LEDs. The Visa- and Mastercard-certified product family now enables banks to design new and distinctive payment cards. Embedded LEDs provide visual feedback when the card is held up to the point-of-service (POS) terminal for a payment transaction.

“Digital payment users have high demands on the convenience, performance and security of products and solutions,” said Tolgahan Yildiz, Vice President Trusted Mobile Connectivity and Transactions at Infineon. “The SECORA Pay product portfolio not only meets these requirements, but also offers system-level innovations in a very easy-to-integrate and scalable form for the card ecosystem, such as plug-and-play LED inlays that illuminate the cards as visual feedback during the payment transactions. This makes card payments interactive without compromising on security and enhances both brand recognition and the user experience.”

The SECORA Pay product portfolio uses a security controller with certified software integrated into Coil-on-Module (CoM) chip modules. It features standardized inlays for easy and fast card production. The portfolio offers fast contactless transaction speeds and high performance. In addition, it now enables card manufacturers to flexibly position white LEDs in a defined area. These can be customized with different colors using printing foil further enhancing brand recognition.

The LED illumination is powered by the POS terminal’s NFC field, eliminating the need for battery power. In addition, the product family can be integrated into a card manufacturers’ production process with minimal changes improving scalability. Quick and easy integration into EMVCo compliant dual interface cards is possible, including a simple and fast certification process for faster time-to-market.


The SECORA Pay solutions supporting inlays with LEDs can be ordered now. More information is available at www.infineon.com/SECORA_Pay.

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Infineon introduces the 650 V CoolMOS CFD7A for energy-efficient fast electric vehicle charging

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 10:52

The accelerated transition to electric vehicles has led to significant innovations in charging systems that demand more cost-efficient and high-performing power electronics. Addressing this, Infineon Technologies expands its 650 V CoolMOS CFD7A portfolio by introducing the QDPAK package. This package family is designed to provide equivalent thermal capabilities with improved electrical performance over the well-known TO247 THD devices, thus enabling efficient energy utilization in onboard chargers and DC-DC converters.

Efficient and powerful electric vehicle charging systems help reduce charging times and vehicle weight, increasing design flexibility and reduce the total cost of ownership of the vehicle. This new addition complements the existing CoolMOS CFD7A series, offering versatility with top-side and bottom-side cooled packages. The QDPAK TSC (top-side cooled), enables designers to achieve higher power densities and optimal PCB space utilization.

The 650 V CoolMOS CFD7A offers several important features for reliable operation in high-voltage applications. Thanks to its reduced parasitic source inductance, the device can minimize electromagnetic interference (EMI), ensuring clear signals and consistent performance. The Kelvin source pin also provides improved precision for current sensing, ensuring accurate measurements even in challenging conditions. With a creepage distance suitable for high-voltage applications, as well as high current capability and high power dissipation (Ptot) of up to 694 W at 25°C, it is a versatile and powerful device for a wide range of high-voltage applications.

New system designs using 650 V CoolMOS CFD7A in QDPAK TSC will maximize PCB space use, doubling power density and enhancing thermal management via substrate thermal decoupling. This approach simplifies assembly, eliminates board stacking, and reduces the need for connectors, thereby lowering system costs. The power switch reduces thermal resistance by up to 35 percent, providing high power dissipation that outperforms standard cooling solutions.

This feature overcomes the thermal limitations of bottom-side cooled SMD designs using FR4 PCBs, resulting in a significant boost in system performance. The optimized power loop design locates drivers near the power switch, improving reliability by reducing stray inductance and chip temperatures. Overall, these features contribute to a cost-effective, robust, and efficient system ideal for modern power needs.

As announced in February 2023, the QDPAK TSC package has been registered as a JEDEC standard for high-power applications, helping to establish a broad adoption of TSC in new designs with one standard package design and footprint. To further accelerate this transition, Infineon will also release additional Automotive Qualified devices in QDPAK TSC for onboard chargers and DC-DC converters in 2024, such as 750 V and 1200 V CoolSiC devices.


The 650 V CoolMOS CFD7A is available in a QDPAK package with two versions, top-side cooled (TSC) and bottom-side cooled (BSC).

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Punjab Engineering College and Cadence Sign MOU for VLSI Training

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 10:42

Multi-year collaboration will strengthen workforce development and support India’s need for semiconductor engineers

Punjab Engineering College (Deemed to be University) and Cadence Design Systems (India) Pvt Ltd, a fully owned subsidiary of Cadence Design Systems, Inc, have today entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), marking the beginning of a long-term partnership.

This strategic partnership signifies a major leap forward in providing world-class education and hands-on experience collaboratively in Cadence’s cutting-edge computational software technology through the newly started Bachelor of Technology (B.Tech) program in Electronics Engineering (VLSI Design and Technology).

The MoU was signed by the director of Punjab Engineering College (PEC), Prof. Baldev Setia, and Mr. Vijayakumar C Patil, Application Engineering Group Director, Cadence, in the presence of the head of the Electronics and Communication Engineering (ECE) Department, Prof. Arun Kr. Singh, BTech VLSI coordinator Dr. Jyoti Kedia, and other faculty members of ECE Department.

Through this collaboration, PEC and Cadence aim to work together to enhance, improve, and extend the knowledge, capabilities, and expertise of the ecosystem in general and the students of PEC in particular. The key features of this collaboration are close alignment of the PEC curriculum towards industry-relevant challenges, new opportunities of internships to provide industry experience to PEC students during their studies and placements, and access to Cadence’s award-winning online training content.

The director of PEC, Prof. Baldev Setia, expressed enthusiasm about this new partnership, saying, “This collaboration will bridge the gap between academia and industry, ensuring that our graduates are well-prepared to meet the challenges of the ever-evolving semiconductor landscape.”

Right-Director of PEC, Prof. Baldev Setia, Left-Mr.Vijayakumar C Patil, Group Director, Application Engineering, System design and Analysis,CadenceRight-Director of PEC, Prof. Baldev Setia, Left-Mr.Vijayakumar C Patil, Group Director, Application Engineering, System design and Analysis,Cadence

Jaswinder Ahuja, corporate vice president and India managing director, Cadence, said, “Cadence has been closely involved in workforce development in India for the last 25 years. According to an article in the Economic Times, a report by the Semicon India Future Skills Talent Committee set up in August 2022 says that India will need 12 lakh workers in semiconductor-related industries by 2032. Initiatives such as this one will help train students in real-life projects and make them industry-ready. We are proud to collaborate with PEC for this MOU.”

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New 62mm package in Infineon’s CoolSiC portfolio helps engineers to achieve higher efficiency and power density

Thu, 11/23/2023 - 09:50

Infineon Technologies has announced the expansion of its CoolSiC 1200 V and 2000 V MOSFET module families with a new industry-standard package. The proven 62mm device is designed in half-bridge topology and is based on the recently introduced and advanced M1H silicon carbide (SiC) MOSFET technology. The package enables the use of SiC for mid-power applications from 250 kW – where silicon reaches the limits of power density with IGBT technology. Compared to a 62mm IGBT module, the list of applications now additionally includes solar, server, energy storage, EV charger, traction, commercial induction cooking, and power conversion systems.

The M1H technology enables a significantly wider gate voltage window, ensuring high robustness to the driver and layout-induced voltage spikes at the gate without any restrictions even at high switching frequencies. In addition to that, very low switching and transmission losses minimize cooling requirements. Combined with a high reverse voltage, these devices meet another requirement of modern system design. By using Infineon’s CoolSiC chip technology, converter designs can be made more efficient, the nominal power per inverter can be increased and system costs can be reduced.

With baseplate and screw connections, the package features a very rugged mechanical design optimized for the highest system availability, minimum service costs, and downtime losses. Outstanding reliability is achieved through high thermal cycling capability and a continuous operating temperature (Tvjop) of 150°C. The symmetrical internal package design provides identical switching conditions for the upper and lower switches. Optionally, the thermal performance of the module can be further enhanced with pre-applied thermal interface material (TIM).


The CoolSiC 62mm package MOSFETs are available in 1200 V variants of 5 mΩ/180 A, 2 mΩ/420 A, and 1 mΩ/560 A. The 2000 V portfolio will include the 4 mΩ/300 A and 3 mΩ/400 A variants. The portfolio will be completed in Q1 2024 with the 1200 V/3 mΩ and 2000 V/5 mΩ variants. An evaluation board is available for rapid characterization of the modules (double pulse/continuous operation). For ease of use, it provides flexible adjustment of the gate voltage and gate resistors. At the same time, it can be used as a reference design for driver boards for volume production.

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