What was previously possible on application processors in infotainment and connectivity now also comes to the real-time processors and microcontrollers required in other vehicle domains. A new hypervisor platform opens up many opportunities for the next generation of increasingly automated cars.
NEW VEHICLE ARCHITECTURES
Vehicles need continuously increasing processing power to run software-defined functions providing infotainment and connected services, assisting the driver, making the vehicle safer and managing energy sources. The era where each new vehicle function required the integration of a new ECU (Electronic Control Units) is long over: vehicle manufacturers are designing new architectures whereby many software functions are integrated on more centralized, powerful devices, often called “domain controllers”.
The various functions in the car have very different requirements on the capabilities of the underlying software and hardware platforms. Software applications do not only require generic processing power but need specialized accelerators to generate high-resolution graphics, process camera-images or radar data and run artificial intelligence algorithms such as deep learning. In addition, the vehicle functions have different requirements on functional safety (from ISO26262 “QM” to “ASIL-D”), boot-times and real-time behavior.