Reliable communication in autonomous electrical cars

  Copyright: RWTH IAS

Electronics are goingt to be everywhere in an autonomous car.



RobKom – Communication electronics in cooperation with power electronics



+49 241 80 27750




Principle picture - elektronics in a car Copyright: RWTH IAS

In the BMBF project RobKom, the IAS, together with partners from all over Germany, is exploring ways of solving technical challenges in electrified vehicles. Automating and electrifying vehicles requires a multitude of additional sensors in the car, which produce and communicate huge quantities of data to be transferred in real time. In addition, to improve the efficiency of the power electronics, wide bandgap semiconductors such as SiC will be used, which, with simple control, lead to massive electromagnetic emissions (EMI).

In order to bring these competing demands on top of each other, a cooperative operation of power and communication electronics is explored. One approach is that the communication electronics report a degradation in data transmission to the power electronics, which then adjusts the switching behavior to emit significantly less electromagnetic emissions at slightly lower efficiency. Another way to make communication more robust is to break the communication during the EMI pulses of the power electronics, thus minimizing the amount of lost packets.

The IAS is involved in two tasks in this project. On the one hand, it is developing an adaptive gate driver for SiC FETs. To reduce emissions due to the extremely steep switching edges, the switching process should be influenced. For this purpose, a current profile must be injected into the gate in the range of few tenth of nanoseconds. In an iterative process, this current profile is then optimized based on external feedback during operation.

In the other subtask, the IAS develops and models an all-digital PLL (AD-PLL). This form of PLL is less susceptible to operating voltage disturbances due to the digital signal representation and offers more possibilities for modulation of the output signal. In addition, by reducing node sizes to 28nm, it becomes more area and energy efficient than a classical analog implementation.

  Copyright: BMBF   Copyright: VDI/VDE