Accelerometers serve consumer markets, with rugged spec for survivability

December 04, 2013 // By Graham Prophet
ST's LIS2HH12 accelerometer introduces a new internal structure inherently more resilient to mechanical and thermal stress than preceding devices; enhanced robustness provides stability and high performance for advanced mobile functionality in fashionable form factors.

STMicroelectronics' high-performance MEMS accelerometer is engineered to withstand increasingly challenging conditions inside the latest smartphones and other portable devices. With today’s processing-intensive mobile apps and super-slim handset designs, portable electronics are more vulnerable to thermal variation and bending, ST says. As OEMs push to deliver new models supporting ever more precise, stable and responsive movement sensing for features such as inclinometer, gesture recognition, gaming, artificial horizon in cameras, indoor navigation, and augmented reality, ST’s LIS2HH12 3-axis accelerometer introduces an innovative mechanical structure and dedicated processing to deliver consistent and stable high performance in thermally challenging conditions inside ever-slimmer portable applications.

The LIS2HH12 is housed in a 2 x 2 x 1 mm package, giving designers extra flexibility to meet pc-board layout rules for wireless handsets, and helping achieve a low overall handset profile. The accelerometer has selectable full-scale range of ±2, ±4 or ±8g and a 16-bit digital output, an integrated temperature sensor, industry-standard I 2C and SPI interfaces, a wide analogue supply-voltage range of 1.71V to 3.6V, and two programmable interrupt generators that help streamline system design. With typical Zero-g level change versus temperature of ±0.25 mg/C, the stability of the LIS2HH12 has doubled compared with previously announced devices. Also, the rejection versus bending with a typical offset accuracy of ±30 mg has improved by 25% over the existing solutions.

The LIS2HH12 is board- and software-compatible with ST’s recently announced LSM303C 2 x 2 mm MEMS eCompass module, enabling you to create differentiated handset products economically by using common hardware and software. Alternatively, the LIS2HH12 accelerometer can be used with ST’s LIS3MDL standalone magnetic sensor to create an eCompass using discrete components.

Volume production is expected to start in Q1 2014, with unit pricing at $0.90 (1000).