NXP intros family of UWB chip solutions for automotive manufacturers

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For the automotive industry, NXP Semiconductors has introduced a new ultra-wideband ( UWB ) family of integrated circuits ( ICs ). In order to support use cases like stable car access, child presence detection, intrusion alert, and gesture recognition, its new Trimension NCJ29D6 solutions add real-time localization with short-range radar characteristics of UWB technology to the French company’s automotive portfolio. The addition of UWB to its line of automotive ICs adds support for Bluetooth Low Energy ( BLE ) and near-field communications ( NFC).

Two Trimension NCJ29D6 products have been introduced by NXP. According to the company, the single-chip NCJ29D6B provides exact real-time localization for secure car access” with increased system performance, reduced system cost, and higher security.” The Trimension NCJ29D6A, which is pin-to-pin suitable, is the second monolithic UWB chip for electrical markets to combine safe localization and short-range radar with an integrated microcontroller unit (MCU). According to the report, this will enable automakers to use a single UWB system for numerous use cases.

Based on the IEEE 802.15.4 standard, UWB allows for the “fine ranging” ( granular low-power short range ) of objects in three dimensions up to 10 centimeters, from a distance of about 200 meters. At a distance from the busy ISM band at 2.4 GHz, it uses high frequency ( between 6.5 and 9, ) and wide spectrum ( 500 MHz to several Hz ). The technology has developed from an impulse-based” see-through-walls” radar imaging technology to an perpendicular frequency- division multiplexing ( OFDM) protocol for large data rate communications.

It can track objects using distance measurements between radios, compute time arrival and movement angle, and locate objects with extreme precision. By 2025, automotive manufacturers ( OEMs) will begin using NXP’s new Trimension UWB radar and ranging solutions.

The fresh NCJ29D6B, according to NXP, “enables enhanced safe car access, enabling users to access their car hands-free through a digital key on an Android phone with UWB support.” To provide OEMs with the most design flexibility and support future-proof secure car access capabilities, [It ] delivers a number of performance enhancements. To detect minute changes in the distance or direction of movement of another UWB-enabled devices, higher RF sensitivity and two concurrent operating receiver chains support antenna diversity and angle of arrival concepts.

It claimed that the twin NCJ29D6A solution was” the first automotive device to combine [UWB location and ranging ] features within a single chip with an integrated MCU… This enables OEMs to transform ONE UW-based system into enamored platform, enabling multiple use cases with the same hardware.” Automotive OEMs can integrate in-cabin sensing for child presence detection and seat belt reminder, kick sensor for automated trunk opening, and different types of smart gesture recognition in addition to secure car access.

UWB will drive fresh advancements in the consumer mechanical experience, and this is only the beginning of what it will enable, said Markus Staeblein, senior vice president and general manager for secure car access at NXP. A one system that can deliver numerous fresh software-defined experiences over time will be advantageous to electrical OEMs. We are assisting UWB in becoming a crucial component of the automotive ecosystem by building on our knowledge and standardization efforts in organizations like the Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC ) and the FiRa Consortium.

Along with Bosch, Samsung, and STMicro, NXP is a founding member of the FiRa ( fine-ranging ) Consortium. According to the statement, UWB outperforms different short-range technologies” by a broad margin” in terms of accuracy, dependability, and power consumption. Time-of-flight ( ToF ) measurements of radar signals between devices are used to achieve ranging. The process uses a wide channel and little pulses that are released 200–1,000 times per second and are each about two nanoseconds long. It turns location discovery into a real-time feature.

According to the consortium, a UWB-enabled system is more immune to interference because they are defense to fading and jamming and resist the “multi-path effect,” which causes signals to reach the receiver by more than one path according to reflection or refraction. Security is also higher. The physical layer ( PHY), which is used to send and receive data packets, has been significantly improved, adding cryptography, random number generation, and other methods to make it more difficult to hack or manipulate UWB systems.

Use cases for UWB are simple to apply to business IoT and various industries. The FiRa Consortium is creating specialized protocols for various verticals and defining the requirements for a variety of applications, such as device-to-device services, location-based service, natural access control, and others.

Matthew Boyle

Matthew Boyle is a distinguished Smart City Consultant, renowned for his expertise in IoT (Internet of Things) and cutting-edge urban technology solutions. With a deep understanding of Smart City initiatives, Matthew excels in leveraging IoT innovations to transform urban landscapes into efficient, sustainable, and connected environments. His strategic insights and hands-on experience in urban planning, data analytics, and IoT implementation make him a trusted expert in the field. Matthew Boyle is your go-to consultant for navigating the complex world of Smart Cities, ensuring seamless integration of IoT technologies, and unlocking the potential of data-driven urban solutions. With his guidance, your city can thrive in the digital age, enhancing quality of life and fostering a sustainable future.

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