Partnerships Grow Innovation in Embedded Automotive

By Ken Briodagh

Senior Technology Editor

Embedded Computing Design

October 09, 2023


It’s hard to think of a category that’s using more resources for embedded computing than automotive. Through its entire supply chain, from raw materials through manufacturing and warehousing, and all the way to the consumer, the automotive industry is using embedded computers to enhance operations, automate process, integrate AI, engage with edge computing, and any number of other implementations.

That includes some experimenting with RISC-V.

It's clear that adoption is going up, too. According to a recent report from Market Reports World, the global Automotive Embedded Systems market was valued at $6.5 billion in 2022 and could grow to just over $9 billion by 2029. That’s not really as telling as the list of top players in the space however: Robert Bosch GmbH, Panasonic, Toshiba, Continental AG, Denso, Mitsubishi Electric, Delphi Automotive, Texas Instruments, Infineon, Harman International, NXP, and Johnson Electric. That list says to me that not only are automotives OEMs implementing Embedded in a big and growing way, but major embedded players are also seeing market growth and taking advantage.

Recent news backs this position, too.

In a recent release, the MIPI Alliance and the Automotive SerDes Alliance announced their participation in a liaison agreement to align MIPI camera specifications with ASA and MIPI standardized SerDes solutions. The deal will reportedly benefit the global automotive embedded industry by enabling native MIPI CSI-2 implementation with ASA-ML PHY.

The MIPI Alliance is an international organization that develops interface specifications for mobile and mobile-influenced industries, and the Automotive SerDes Alliance (ASA), is a non-profit industry alliance of automotive technology providers trying to standardize asymmetric SerDes technology.

The terms of the agreement create a way for implementers to use MIPI Camera Serial Interface 2 (MIPI CSI-2) natively, with the ASA Motion Link (ASA-ML) physical layer interface. MIPI and ASA each have standardized asymmetric SerDes PHY interfaces for automotive applications such as advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), autonomous driving systems (ADS) and in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) that rely on cameras/sensors and displays. Under the liaison terms, MIPI members can implement CSI-2 directly only with a MIPI PHY or MIPI Board-approved non-MIPI PHY. ASA also agreed to develop an Application Stream Encapsulation Protocol (ASEP) to enable native CSI-2 transport over the ASA Motion Link PHY. Once the CSI-2 ASEP is approved by MIPI, ASA will include the CSI-2 ASEP in its next specification release as its only recommended camera protocol interface.

“This agreement supports the continued coalescence around MIPI CSI-2 in automotive applications,” said Sanjiv Desai, chair of the MIPI Alliance, in the release. “The specification is already strongly established in the market, and we believe alignment on CSI-2 will help foster a streamlined development environment for the global automotive industry. At the same time, MIPI will continue to support MIPI A-PHY and the rapidly growing ecosystem around it.”

As indicated in the MIPI and ASA agreement, autonomous vehicles are the main target for embedded development, tools, and apps. Horizon Robotics and Wind River have partnered up to develop autonomous vehicle solutions.

According to a recent joint announcement from the two companies, the collaboration is designed to create solutions that will enable automotive OEMs to leverage a new integrated ADAS hardware/software solution that’s based on Horizon’s Journey series computing solutions and the Wind River cloud-to-edge portfolio.

Horizon’s Journey series offers computing solutions for automated driving, and Wind River will now enable its embedded computing software to work with Journey, including the VxWorks RTOS, and Helix Virtualization Platform, a safety-certified Type 1 hypervisor-based multi-tenant platform.

“Our collaboration with Horizon is an important step in building an open, innovative, and collaborative ecosystem, which is paramount to the development of the smart mobility industry,” said Avijit Sinha, Chief Product Officer, Wind River. “The combination of Wind River software and Horizon hardware will allow OEMs to better leverage the advantages of localized development and delivery for next-generation automotive solutions. Together, we look forward to further advancing the software-defined vehicle and smart driving.”

Of course this is only a glimpse into how embedded tools are at play in automotive innovation, so keep an eye on us for all the embedded automotive news as these apps keep developing.

Ken Briodagh is a writer and editor with two decades of experience under his belt. He is in love with technology and if he had his druthers, he would beta test everything from shoe phones to flying cars. In previous lives, he’s been a short order cook, telemarketer, medical supply technician, mover of the bodies at a funeral home, pirate, poet, partial alliterist, parent, partner and pretender to various thrones. Most of his exploits are either exaggerated or blatantly false.

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