Enabling safer roads for all vehicles

Brooke Williams doesn’t have to look far to find inspiration for his work on the TDA3x automotive system on a chip (SoC) family used in advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). The business manager for ADAS just glances at the picture frames on his desk.

“I have three kids who are not yet driving, but one is three years away,” Brooke said. “When I look at the number of deaths worldwide related to vehicle incidents, and more than 90 percent of those are caused by driver error, I think, ‘We need to fix this problem, the sooner the better.’”

 ADAS can be found in many luxury vehicles today, and those same features, like lane departure warning or blind spot detection, have now started trickling down to mid- to entry-level vehicles. The TDA3x, announced today, will enable a flood of new cars in the lower price range to benefit from the same features found in the most innovative vehicles.

The TDA3x SoC enables the smallest ADAS modules on the market with an incomparable amount of intelligence built in at a more affordable price point, allowing car manufacturers to have more flexibility and capability than ever before to add ADAS to a wider range of models.

TDA3x is an SoC that interfaces with a range of sensors around a vehicle and processes the data into meaningful information for the vehicle or driver to make a safer decision in a dangerous situation. For example, the TDA3x can be used in front camera systems to notify a driver if they leave their lane (LDW), and with advanced safety features, it can also help vehicles stay in their lanes with lane keep assist (LKA). The same system can be used to detect vehicles, people or objects, automatically braking or steering the vehicle toward safety.

TDA3x can support surround-view systems giving drivers a birds-eye view of their surroundings for park assist, and with the significant amount of signal processing, the TDA3x SoC adds capabilities to add intelligent features such as auto braking.

TDA3x also will enable very small form factor cameras that will enable intelligence to be added to rear viewing cameras, again enabling detection of objects or pedestrians to automatically brake to avoid collisions.  The SoC family will also address Fusion and Radar ADAS applications as well.

This latest technology behind the TDA3x SoC is built upon a history of innovation from the previously released TDA2x SoC.

“We learned from a decade of experience with the TDA2x SoC and other ADAS products. Our engineers take all of that learning and apply it to this new device family that is now efficient enough in terms of performance, power and cost to add these intelligent features to entry- and mid-level cars,” Brooke said.

By offering auto manufacturers both the TDA2x SoC for high-end vehicles and the TDA3x SoC for mid-to-entry level vehicles using a common architecture, these customers can take the their investments in software and algorithms and apply them to a variety of makes and models with minimal development time and additional investment. This gets the technology to market faster at a reduced cost, and is the kind of scalability that can’t be found with other ADAS SoC technologies on the market.

TI engineers were also able to deploy their passion and creativity with the TDA3x SoC by enabling the world’s first automotive package-on-package (PoP) SoC. The PoP package enables external memory component to be stacked on top of the TDA3x SoC, resulting in a miniaturization of the overall footprint and simplification of the circuit board.

The TDA3x SoC encourages innovation from car manufacturers, enabling them to push the boundaries of impossible, meet ever increasing safety demands from federal regulators and make our roads safer.

“I’d like for my kids to be as safe as possible when they start driving,” Brooke said.

With the TDA3x SoC, that safer future is closer than ever before.