MADISON, Wis. — Car OEMs’ growing desire to meet or exceed higher New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) ratings is driving chip suppliers to develop more sophisticated advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) SoCs. This demand comes not just from developers of high-end cars but also manufacturers of entry- to mid-level vehicles, according to Texas Instruments.
TI is unveiling on Tuesday, Oct. 21, a new family of ADAS processors called TDA3x. Developed on the same architecture as previous TDA2x devices, the “3x family” supports ADAS algorithms such as lane-keep assist, adaptive cruise control, traffic sign recognition, pedestrian and object detection, forward collision warning, and back-over prevention.
Scalability is the name of the game, said Brooke Williams, TI’s ADAS SoC business manager. OEM investment in ADAS algorithms designed to run on TDA2x will be protected, since the algorithms developed for high-end cars can be reused in TDA3x processors designed for mid- to entry-level cars.
TI’s TDA family of ADAS processors is designed to not just warn a driver of imminent danger on the road, but to avoid accidents by taking control of the vehicle, activating such functions as auto braking and auto steering.
In addition to such “safety-critical” ADAS processors, TI today is rolling out “informational” ADAS processors based on the company’s Jacinto infotainment processors.
TI is cognizant of an emerging trend among Tier 1s and car OEMs eager to add the “digital cockpit” experience to a vehicle’s center stack. Responding to such market dynamics, TI is enabling its Jacinto infotainment processors to process and display some of the ADAS information, including surround view, object/pedestrian detection, augmented reality navigation, and driver identification.
While the new Jacinto 6 automotive processors can display such informational ADAS functions, they are not designed for safety-critical ADAS. “It will not stop the car,” said Cyril Clocher, infotainment processors marketing manager at TI.
The new TDA3x family is designed to be scalable from TDA2x for such applications as front camera, surround view, and fusion of radar and forward-facing cameras, for example.
Newly enabled by the TDA3x processors are such functions as “smart rear camera” and “radar applications” that will be fully scalable from the high-end to low-end vehicles. The smart rear camera, for example, will scan while the car is backing up, automatically putting on the brakes if it sees a pedestrian.
Williams explained that TDAx3 specifically addresses requirements for “lower cost, further integration [of image signal processing] and lower power.”
Designed into the TDA3x are: two C66x DSP cores, one vision accelerator core (EVE), dual ARM Cortex-M4 cores, image signal processor, safety hardware support, internal memory, and up to four camera inputs and multiple display outputs.
TDA3x block diagram
(Source: Texas Instruments)
Next Page: Blurred line between infotainment and ADAS