IMC Newsdesk

Smallest LiDAR ICs double bandwidth for faster AVs

  • March 5, 2020
  • imc

Analogue and mixed signal tech specialist Maxim Integrated has developed what it claims are the industry’s smallest LiDAR ICs, with more than double the bandwidth of available products. The new range of LiDAR ICs will lead to faster self-driving cars capable of safely achieving speeds comparable to today’s human driven cars.

Maxim says that compared to closest competitive solutions, the MAX40026 high-speed comparator and the MAX40660/MAX40661 high-bandwidth transimpedance amplifiers enable 10mph (15km/h) faster autonomous driving at highway speeds by providing more than 2x higher bandwidth and accommodating 32 additional channels (128 vs. 96) to a LiDAR module within the same module size.

The new ICs are designed to align with the evolution of automotive self-driving systems from 35mph to 65mph and beyond. According to Maxim, LiDAR sensors are playing an increasing role in the fusion of vehicle sensors for their ability to provide accurate distance measurement of objects. 

The company says that the new ICs can accommodate 33 percent more channels within the same LiDAR module size compared to the closest competitor, allowing the MAX40660/MAX40661 transimpedance amplifiers (TIAs) to provide optical receiver designers with higher-resolution images that enable faster autonomous driving systems. 

The system size of the MAX40026 high-speed comparator plus the MAX40660/MAX40661 TIAs is 5mm² smaller than the closest competitive solution, allowing developers to fit more channels into space-constrained vehicle platforms. The ICs meet the safety requirements of the automotive industry with AEC-Q100 qualification, enhanced electrostatic discharge (ESD) performance and failure modes, effects and diagnostic analysis (FMEDA) to support ISO 26262 certification at the system level.

“Excellent sensors need an excellent signal chain. It has been a pleasure collaborating with Maxim to create a joint evaluation kit leveraging each of our high-bandwidth LiDAR solutions,” said Conny Heiler, director of Marketing at First Sensor.

“Automotive engineers need elements that support greater precision, lower power and smaller solution size in order to add next-generation LiDAR capabilities to cars rolling off the assembly line,” said Veronique Rozan, executive director of business management, Core Automotive and Special Projects at Maxim Integrated. “Advancements in LiDAR-based solutions will support greater driver awareness and safety from next-generation automotive navigation systems.”