In his presentation at IESF Detroit, Paul Hansen, editor and publisher of The Hansen Report on Automotive Electronics, quoted a Bosch forecast that of 103 million vehicles to be produced in 2020, 100 million will have a combustion engine.
At the Freescale Technology Forum (FTF) in San Antonio last week, Ray Cornyn, VP and General Manager of Freescale’s automotive microcontrollers group, said that despite the gains that have been made in combustion engine technology, only about 13 percent of fuel energy is used to move the vehicle. That leaves a lot of room for improvement.
Cornyn told FTF attendees that a lot of energy is lost as heat; 2 percent is consumed by features like the power steering pump, water pump, and air conditioning compressor; about 6 percent is lost moving energy from the engine to the wheels, and 17 percent of energy is consumed while the vehicle is idling.
Cornyn said the automotive industry is exploring a variety of powertrain options, including advanced gasoline and diesel internal combustion engines as well as hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and electric vehicle design. In April Freescale launched a multicore Qorivva microcontroller (MPC5746M) with more than twice the benchmark performance of its predecessor.
“There is a new generation of engine control techniques that need increased processing performance,” Cornyn said. “For example, gasoline direct injection can deliver up to 15 percent in fuel economy improvement and as much as 25 percent reduction in hydrocarbon emissions. Cylinder deactivation when the engine is running can turn an 8-cylinder into a 4-cylinder or a 6-cylinder into a 3-cylinder engine under light load conditions. This technique can improve fuel economy up to 16%. Our Qorivva automotive MCUs are making these advanced control technologies commercially accessible.”
At the event, of which Mentor Graphics was a diamond sponsor, Freescale introduced single-chip Vybrid controller solutions based on an ARM Cortex dual-core architecture. The Vybrid line targets connected radios and entry-level infotainment systems and features what Freescale calls silicon-enabled software. The devices address up to 80 percent of an application developer’s software requirements.