ST rolls central crash sensors for airbag systems

September 22, 2015 //By Christoph Hammerschmidt
ST rolls central crash sensors for airbag systems
Airbags are said to be the single innovation in the car that saved most lives. STMicroelectronics (ST) now introduced two new crash sensors for installation in a central location inside the vehicle. With the move the chipmaker completes its portfolio of airbag control devices – the company already offers peripheral crash sensors, airbag control ICs and safety microcontrollers for airbag applications.

The AIS1120SX and AIS2120SX single- and dual-axis in-plane MEMS accelerometers handle accelerations up to 120g and are designed to be mounted in the vehicle’s Airbag Control Unit (ACU) responsible for evaluating the sensor data and triggering the appropriate restraint system.

32-bit computing power is required to control state-of-the-art airbag systems.

Each sensor includes two independent sensing channels for redundancy and incorporates both slow and fast offset cancellation as well as temperature compensation. Built-in power-on self-test ensures reliability and run-time diagnostics help developers achieve the required level of functional safety. Both sensors have standard 400Hz signal bandwidth, which the system designer can extend to 1600Hz.

The AIS1120SX and AIS2120SX sensors are specified over the extended temperature range from -40°C to +105°C. They will enter full production in Q1 2016 in a plastic full-molded SOIC8 package.

Based on the 32-bit Power Architecture, ST’s SPC5 automotive microcontroller family includes Safety Line devices that offer a choice of single- or dual-core configurations with up to 1Mbyte of Flash. Multiple DSPI (Deserial Serial Peripheral Interface) channels optimize system and diagnostic control. In addition to that, a Fault Collection and Control Unit (FCCU) and built-in self-tests provide safety coverage for ASIL (Automotive Safety Integrity Level) development.

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