Week In Review: Auto, Security, Pervasive Computing

Infineon, IR HiRel rad-hard chips on James Webb; Synopsys photonics on Jupiter Networks; NHTSA questions Tesla games.


NASA plans to launch the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) this Saturday, Dec 25, on an European Space Agency (ESA) rocket. Mission-critical radiation-hardened components from IR HiRel, an Infineon company, will go up with the JWST. IR HiRel space-grade DC-DC converters, rad hard MOSFETs and other power control products are in the spacecraft bus subsystems, such as electrical power, altitude control, communications, and command and data handling. “With JWST expected to operate 1.5 million kilometers from Earth, it will face deep space conditions far more extreme than Hubble,” said Chris Opoczynski, senior vice president and general manager of IR HiRel in a press release. “The spacecraft bus provides vital support functions for the telescope’s operation, not the least of which is power distribution, command, control and data handling, etc.”

The cybersecurity authorities of the United States, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom issued a joint cybersecurity advisory warning of the multiple vulnerabilities in Apache’s Log4j software library and encouraging everyone to mitigate against the threat as soon as possible.

NXP is working with Hailo on automotive AI for electronic control units (ECUs).  NXP also announced last week that it is working with Foxconn on automotive AI.

The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) opened an investigation on Tesla model years 2017 – 2022 in response to reports that a driver has visual access to digital games while driving. According to a Reuters story, before 2020, the game feature may have been only playable when the car was in park, but since then, Tesla allow the game to be used on the driver’s front consul screen while the car is running and in motion..

Zero emission vehicles
The NIO ET5 Sedan, a recently unveiled EV, has a supercomputer on board, called the NIO Adam supercomputer, to run the car’s AI-assisted driving features. Nvidia says the NIO Adam has four NVIDIA DRIVE Orin systems-on-a-chip (SoC) for redundancy but each SoC serves a purpose: two SoCs process the 8 gigabytes per second of data from vehicle sensors, one SoC is a safety backup so the car can operate safely in any situation; and the fourth SoC is for local training and personalization.

Pervasive computing, 5G
Tower Semiconductor and Juniper Networks announced silicon photonics (SiPho) foundry-ready process with integrated III-V lasers, amplifiers modulators, and detectors. Juniper Networks will be using Synopsys’ OptoCompiler photonics design platform for designing its photonic-enabled chips destined for optical communications. Photonic chips are finding use in providing optical connectivity in data centers and telecom networks. Other emerging applications for photonic chips are in artificial intelligence (AI), lidar, and other sensors.

The global IoT in automotive market will grow at a CAGR of 25.5% by 2028, says BlueWeave Consulting, a research firm. The global market, fueled by smart city, parking initiatives, and commercialization of automotive features, will grow from $58.7 billion (USD) in 2021 to $286.8 billion (USD) by the end of 2028. EVs are also contributing to the growth.

Nvidia is renting out server-grade AI computers that do not require data-center power and cooling. The DGX Station A100 can be rented monthly from Rentacomputer.com.

A power loss is the cause of AWS servers going down again on the East Coast, according to Data Center Dynamics.

The Carlyle Group is buying the U.S. data-center company Involta. Involta has 12 data centers in the U.S.

ABIResearch forecasts that 1.2 billion devices with TinyML chipsets will ship in 2022 and that China will lead in 5G enterprise and IoT module vendors’ market, among 67 other predictions.

Companies, people
Intel apologized to China for warning its suppliers to avoid buying goods and services from Xinjiang region, where human rights abuses are alleged against the predominantly Muslim Uyghurs population.

Chip health monitoring company proteanTecs was recognized by Frost & Sullivan with the 2021 award for Best Practices Award for Global Electronics Health Monitoring Technology Innovation Leadership.

U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has promoted 26-year NIST veteran Joannie Chin as director of its engineering laboratory. She served as acting director of the lab.

Arm Fellow Teresa McLaurin received the Rising Women of Influence Award from Global Semiconductor Alliance. McLaurin is the senior director of design for test (DFT) architecture at Arm.

Read more news at Manufacturing, Test and Design, Low Power.

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