indie Semiconductor Launches Automotive Industry’s Most Integrated USB-PD Programmable Controller

By Tiera Oliver

Associate Editor

Embedded Computing Design

July 08, 2022


indie Semiconductor Launches Automotive Industry’s Most Integrated USB-PD Programmable Controller

indie Semiconductor, an Autotech solutions innovator, has launched a dual-channel USB Power Delivery (PD) IC that reduces component count, simplifies designs and enhances reliability of in-cabin vehicle charging systems for portable devices.

Combining power conversion, control, and supporting any configuration of USB Type A and Type C ports, the iND87300 is an integrated USB-PD firmware programmable controller.

OEMs are focused on enhancing the in-cabin experience allowing drivers and passengers to safely connect and fast charge personal devices inside the vehicle. Automotive USB-based power delivery is rapidly evolving to support higher power charging requirements of products such as tablets and laptops with an increasing number of ports throughout the cabin. The iND87300 has been designed to meet these challenging system requirements through an ultra-small form factor with minimal components. Further, the iND87300 supports field upgradability to future proof device interoperability and user experience utilizing indie’s firmware tools and global support.

The controller brings together, in a single, ultra-compact 8.8mm x 10mm QFN package, a buck-boost converter, Arm Cortex M0 core processor, 64kB Flash and 16kB SRAM memory, a 12-bit housekeeping Analog to Digital Converter (ADC), and a variety of system interfaces including UART, I2C, and LIN. A USB-PD PHY and firmware stack supports USB-C channel configuration and PD port control, while the on-board 32-bit MCU allows vendor-specific configurations as well as field upgrades and over-the-air (OTA) updates that ensure future compatibility with new and emerging charging profiles and USB-PD protocols.

Designed to enable system efficiency above 95%, this device can deliver up to 60W of output power per channel, a programmable output voltage between 3.3V and 21V, and supports maximum currents up to 5A. Dedicated LED illumination drivers and general purpose I/O round up the feature list.

The iND87300 is sampling now, qualified for AEC-Q100 Grade 1 and is fully compliant with USB BC1.2 and USB PD2.0/3.0 standards as well as a number of proprietary charging modes. It supports both charging downstream port (CDP) and dedicated charging port (DCP) in addition to Apple and Samsung charging schemes. Direct connection to the vehicle power supply is made possible by the ability to withstand a 40V load dump from the vehicle battery and 24V tolerant pins that protect against shorts to VBAT and GND.

“At indie, we are creating innovative technologies to meet the increasing demand for personalized in-cabin user experiences,” said Michael Wittmann, vice president of product marketing at indie Semiconductor. “Drivers and passengers expect to be able to charge phones, tablets, laptops and other battery-powered devices conveniently and safely. Our highly innovative solution allows OEMs to meet current and future USB charging requirements with fewer components and reduced design complexity. We are excited to be working with multiple Tier 1 and OEM customers to bring iND87300-based solutions to high volume production in early 2023.”

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Tiera Oliver, Associate Editor for Embedded Computing Design, is responsible for web content edits, product news, and constructing stories. She also assists with newsletter updates as well as contributing and editing content for ECD podcasts and the ECD YouTube channel. Before working at ECD, Tiera graduated from Northern Arizona University where she received her B.S. in journalism and political science and worked as a news reporter for the university’s student led newspaper, The Lumberjack.

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