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MOST150 boosts car infotainment system

Posted: 08 Jul 2015     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Media Oriented System Transport  MOST Cooperation  Plastic Optical Fibre  MOST150  Plastic Optical Fibre 

Media Oriented System Transport (MOST) technology has been evolving for many years and now hit more than 170 car models on the road worldwide. The third generation based on MOST150, with a bandwidth of 150 Mbit/s, is successfully on the road. Driven by the OEMs, the automotive series developers have designed a multi-channel network with inherent synchronicity, which provides determinism and low latency. Many of the challenges in the automotive environment have been solved during the past 15 years and made the MOST standard robust and mature.

Meanwhile, the work is continually going on and new features will be defined in the coming MOST Specification Rev. 3.1. One of these features is a multi-port network interface controller that is able to allocate the true, full bandwidth of up to 150 Mbit/s in up to eight branches. This enables a streaming bandwidth of up to 1.2 Gbit/s and allows a variety of topologies. In addition, a remote network interface controller has been defined in a MOST network. It works autonomously without the need for a host controller, thus enabling the concentration of software in a centralized unit and tremendously simplifying the complexity of the "remote" nodes. Beyond, this article will show the evolution of the application framework based on new data types and a new xml schema based exchange format. Adding these features, MOST Technology turns out to be resilient and future-proof.

Multi-channel approach
MOST is a multi-channel network that allows the parallel usage of all services for control data, streaming data and packet data through one network (figure 1). These services are easily synchronised, if necessary, in a highly deterministic way. Based on synchronous MOST frames, the transmission of both native streaming data and packet-oriented data, for example packetised elementary streams, is supported. The third generation of the MOST Specification [1], [2] introduces MOST with 150 Mbit/s. It is supported for both Plastic Optical Fibre (POF) and Coax. MOST150 enables IP data communication, thus providing an automotive-ready Ethernet channel according to IEEE 802.3 with freely configurable bandwidth from 0 to nearly 150 Mbit/s. MOST is open to a broad variety of IP protocol based applications, including seamless integration of wireless mobile devices or car-to-car and car-to-infrastructure communication.

Figure 1: MOST Data.

High streaming bandwidth
MOST is designed as a synchronous network system solution with high bandwidth, at nearly no overhead for administrative communication for transport of various streaming data. The management of synchronous and isochronous streaming connections allows for an appropriate allocation of resources and thus provides access to quality of service (QoS) communication. Concerning the isochronous channel, QoS IP communication is provided as well.

Hard real-time and low latency requirements
MOST meets hard real-time and low latency requirements. The MOST system concept is based on inherent synchronicity at the physical layer level. Severe jitter restrictions are held in an automotive environment temperature range from -40°C to 95°C (or even 105°C). Clear distinction between transfer jitter (relevant on the network system level) and alignment jitter (only relevant on the single link level) leads to a robust system design. The specification limits are testable and can be checked during a type approval through compliance verification.

Functional system model and safety aspects
The MOST Framework, with its function block concept, comprises a clear application programming interface which allows simple access to the applications. It is able to standardise interfaces between both infotainment applications and applications of other domains, such as sensor interfaces and camera interfaces. Due to the functional system model, it does not matter whether the communication partner is sitting in the same control unit or connected across the network.

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