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Meeting IP requirements of ADAS SoCs

Posted: 18 Sep 2015     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Advanced Driver Assistance Systems  ADAS  SoCs  application processor  LPDDR4 

The deliverables or "Work Products" of an ISO 26262-certified IP Safety Package includes integrated hardware safety features, verification plans, safety plans, verification reports, safety manuals and Failure Mode Effect and Diagnostic Analysis (FMEDA) to be used by SoC designers as input to their SoC-level FMEDA report, thereby accelerating their SoC development. Compliance certifications for SoCs and IP as SEooCs elements are granted by accredited industry auditors such as SGS TUV SAAR who perform product and process reviews, assessments and audits.

AEC Q100 reliability
To ensure highest reliability, the Automotive Electronics Council (AEC) Component Technical Committee defined AEC Q100 standard to ensure components are qualified for use in harsh automotive environment.

The AEC Q100 standard defines semiconductor SoC qualification requirements and test methods and guidelines recognised by the automotive supply chain. The specification contains a set of failure mechanism-based stress tests and conditions that semiconductor SoC suppliers use to qualify their SoCs at various temperature grades.

The objective is to ensure high reliability by precipitating failures in an accelerated manner compared to standard automotive use conditions.

Although the AEC Q100 qualification applies to SoC-level components, IP suppliers can maximise designs' qualification success by performing AEC Q100 testing for IP. IP providers who perform AEC Q100 testing for their IP and provide characterisation reports for key tests such as Accelerated Environment Stress Tests, Accelerated Lifetime Simulation Tests, Die Fabrication Reliability Tests, and Electrical Verification Tests validate they meet the robust reliability requirements demanded by automotive customers.

Only IP suppliers that work closely with leading process foundries and leading semiconductor and Tier 1 suppliers can help designers operate their SoCs at automotive temperature grades and mission profiles for ADAS applications.

TS 16949 Quality Management
Another critical focus for IP suppliers providing IP products to designers of ADAS SoCs is to meet the automotive industry's quality requirements.

The TS 16949 Quality Management standard applies to the product development process and defines the quality metrics for automotive products. The specification defines the development of a quality management system that provides for continual improvement, emphasizing defect prevention and consistency in the automotive supply chain.

TS 16949 Quality Management applies to sites of an organisation where customer-specified parts for production are manufactured. Design centres and IP suppliers for the design of automotive products may form part of the audit for the design/manufacturing of the SoC but cannot obtain stand-alone TS 16949 certification.

As design centres for the SoC can be part of an overall TS 16949 certification, selecting IP suppliers with a deep understanding and commitment to implement and follow the required development processes, best practices and quality specifications will help designers meet automotive quality levels.

The German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) Quality Management Centre determined that ISO/TS 16949 certification is the entry ticket for suppliers to the automobile industry and "a special need for action is seen in the incomplete propagation of ISO TS 16949 beyond Tier1/Tier2 and throughout the entire supply chain of the automobile industry" (Heinz-Günter Plegniere, Manager VDA-QMC[3]).

Designers who need to meet the requirements of the TS 16949 specification can select IP suppliers who have upgraded their development flows and can provide designers with the required metrics and evidence including quality manuals, Product Management Process (PMP), procedures for document and record control, evidence of control and document retention, and support levels.

IP suppliers play a key role in the automotive supply chain to enable the new generation of high-performance ADAS SoCs. Vision-based SoCs may contain a high amount of third-party IP to implement the key embedded vision, sensor fusion, multimedia, security and advanced connectivity functions.

Although IP suppliers have permeated the semiconductor ecosystem for consumer, mobile, PC and communications applications, not all IP suppliers can support stringent automotive level requirements.

As designers initiate their next-generation ADAS SoCs, they must assess the IP suppliers' capability to provide ISO 26262 Safety Packages with ISO 26262 certification, AEC Q100 testing and TS16949 quality management and audits.

IP suppliers with the commitment and resources to meet automotive industry requirements help ensure the success of automotive SoC suppliers, Tier 1s and OEMs to meet the functionality, performance, quality and reliability levels for ADAS SoCs targeting 28nm and 16/14nm FinFET technologies.

[1] Gartner, Market Trends: Advanced Driving Assistance Systems and Drive Recorders Will Put More Cameras in Vehicles, January 23, 2015

About the author
Ron DiGiuseppe is senior marketing manager at Synopsys.

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