NXP sampling car-to-X silicon under RoadLINK programme

October 15, 2013 // By Graham Prophet
NXP has begun to sample its first Car-to-X communications product, SAF5100, to major automotive OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers

SAF5100 is NXP's first product from the RoadLINK range, and is now available for automotive design-in. It is a flexible software-defined radio processor for car-to-car (C2C) and car-to-infrastructure (C2I) communication, part of NXP’s concept for a complete C2X (C2C+C2I) solution. The SAF5100 is also the first product to become generally available from the MK4 reference design for connected vehicles, following its launch in July by NXP and Cohda Wireless , a specialist in wireless communication for automotive safety applications.

The product introduction follows successful C2X field trials worldwide with an earlier version of the SAF5100, such as the simTD trial in Germany; the ongoing Safety Pilot Model Deployment conducted by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) in the US; and the SCORE@F trial in France.

The SAF5100 processor is fully programmable and can support unique algorithms to improve reception in wireless communication. The SAF5100 can support multiple wireless standards as well as different OEM antenna configurations such as 802.11p antenna diversity, providing OEMs with the flexibility to support emerging standards across multiple regions via firmware updates. It also provides peak wireless link performance via the 802.11p firmware from Cohda Wireless, which is a fully integrated part of the solution. With a 12 x 12-mm LFBGA package, the SAF5100 has a very small PCB footprint which allows the 802.11p receiver to fit into confined spaces, and significantly reduces bill of materials (BOM) costs. The software-defined radio approach allows OEMs to deploy a global C2X solution based on a single hardware platform with end-of-line configurability by firmware download. Features include;

- Software-Defined Radio processor for global C2X standards, covering Europe, US and Japan

- Support for different OEM antenna configurations and different diversity schemes

- Best-in-class 802.11p reception performance and communication range for mobility use cases even in non-line-of-sight conditions

- Flexible use case management allowing field updates – to adapt to existing standards as they evolve, and to support