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Automotive chipsets delivers video and control to improve driver safety

June 16, 2010 // Paul Buckley

Automotive chipsets delivers video and control to improve driver safety

National Semiconductor Corp., has unveiled its FPD-Link III family of automotive-grade serializer and deserializer (SerDes) chipsets featuring the industry's first real-time, bidirectional control channel for driver-assist video cameras.


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The FPD-Link III chipsets improve driver safety and response time by delivering clock, data, and real-time I2C bidirectional control, continuously over a single differential pair.

Camera systems have become an important automotive safety component, typically combining multiple camera modules with advanced image analysis to help drivers monitor road conditions, detect hazards and avoid collisions. Automotive safety system designers can now use National's FPD-Link III embedded clock SerDes to connect cameras and displays to an electronic control unit (ECU) with minimal software overhead and fewer wires, reducing cost and weight.

National's DS90UB901Q serializer and DS90UB902Q deserializer are designed for automotive camera systems with 14-bit color depth. The chipset employs cyclical redundancy check (CRC) to validate and monitor data integrity and eliminates the need for an additional control wire to the camera module.

Unlike alternatives that relegate control data into the blanking periods or small gaps between video frames, National's proprietary back-channel technology delivers continuous, real-time communication between several remote camera heads and the ECU. Real-time communication provides the immediate control needed to synchronize multiple sideview and rearview cameras, enabling image stitching that delivers a 'birds-eye' view to assist drivers with blind spots, lane departure, collision avoidance and parking.

National's FPD-Link III family also includes the DS90UB903Q serializer and DS90UB904Q deserializer, which support the 18-bit color depth needed for in-vehicle infotainment systems. The SerDes chipset connects the graphics host processor with central information displays, rear seat entertainment displays and navigation displays. The SerDes' integrated real-time control channel enables faster response times for touch screen displays and eliminates the need for external control cables and connectors.
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