Automotive Ethernet needed for adaptive headlights, says Porsche: Page 2 of 2

September 21, 2016 // By Julien Happich
At the Ethernet & IP @ Automotive Technology Day hosted by the IEEE-Standards Association in Paris this week, auto maker Porsche revealed a novel use case for automotive Ethernet.

Back to the presentation, Benderman evaluated different network architectures, understanding that the high-resolution algorithms required to drive the individual left and right headlights ought to run close-by, his preference was for a centralized system structure. His assumptions were that each headlamp with 100,000 addressable pixels driven to 8-bit grey levels (256 shades) at a 50Hz frame rate would require 40Mbit/s data rates. This would call for much higher bandwidths than what today's CAN with Flexible Data Rate (CAN-FD) could accommodate.

Then, Benderman exposed various Ethernet topologies, each one with trades-off in bandwidth, number of ports required from the master ECU, and possible latency issues between left and right headlight signals.

"Synchronization is needed, as well as a real-time transport protocol. We must also ensure data integrity in front of the lighting systems", he stressed, adding that Porsche was also evaluating different image JPG compression ratio to lighten the data load.

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