Monday, November 13, 2006

Unique Sensor Solution for Use in Vehicles

originally posted by littlec

HELSINKI, FINLAND — (MARKET WIRE) — October 12, 2006 — VTI Technologies, the major manufacturer of high-performance motion and pressure sensors for automotive and consumer related applications, is launching a best-in-class accelerometer and inclinometer platform for vehicle stability control and related systems worldwide.

The new VTI automotive digital accelerometer platform is intended for single and multiple axis acceleration and inclination measurement. It has been developed to meet the most demanding needs of vehicle electronic systems using digital signal processing, introducing several important safety features such as continuous self-test. The components form a complete set of low-g accelerometers with the same mechanical design and SPI-interface. They are small in size, high in performance and require only one PCB design for all versions. They cover acceleration and inclination measurements in applications like Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Hill Start Assistant (HSA), Electronic Parking Brake (EPB), Roll Stability, Roll Over and Electrically Controlled Suspension. The multiple options for each car platform can be covered with one ECU or sensor cluster design by selecting the appropriate sensor version from VTI’s new accelerometer Series.

“This new digital concept offers acceleration and inclination sensing as a complete platform, which has in all directions the same pin-out in one-, two- and three-axis accelerometers. This means major savings to our customers in broad range of automotive applications”, explains Hannu Laatikainen, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for automotive products at VTI. “The new generation of 3D-MEMS sensing elements for multiple axis are very small (2.6 x 2.0 x 1.6 mm), allowing same package size for all designs from one to three axis. These products also support the trend in automotive electronics towards smart integration and better reliability with intelligent self-test features — more intelligence and functions included into the same sensor packages.”

A major application area for the new accelerometers is in the sensor cluster needed for ESC. ESC is an active safety system that recognizes unstable driving conditions at the very outset and applies corrective action automatically. ESC works by monitoring the actual car motion with several sensors and compares this information to the driver’s input. In an unstable condition, the ESC intervenes via the engine electronics and the brake system to help stabilize the vehicle. An accelerometer is needed as part of ESC to measure lateral acceleration. In more advanced vehicles and systems, longitudinal acceleration/inclination is measured if the car is 4-wheel driven or has an automatic Hill Start Assistant function or Electronic Parking Brake. Vertical acceleration measurement is needed for suspension and roll over detection.
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