Suppliers to the auto industry, and the suppliers to those suppliers, must meet standards like AEC-Q100, which establishes common electrical component qualification requirements for ICs, IEC 61508, intended to be a basic functional safety standard applicable to all kinds of industries, and ISO 26262, which establishes standards for functional safety of electrical and/or electronic systems in production automobiles.
In this case, Mixel, as a supplier of IP to NXP, designs its MIPI IP with reliability and robust operation from the start, and then does the extra work to make sure the IP meets these standards. For example, Mixel’s D-PHY meets the AEC-Q100 Grade 0 specification.
Validating the design requires extensive use of statistical simulations incorporating aging effects and temperature variation. Mixel varies the critical parameters in a normal distribution running simulations so each device variance is accounted for. The design target is to perform within a six sigma range. Such simulations require careful planning such that the performance becomes predictable within the expected tolerances of the D-PHY's operating environment. The performance is further validated with extensive testing and characterization done, both by Mixel, and by NXP. The extra effort results in reliable and safe system operation.
Using MIPI in radar, lidar and beyond
As suppliers move to extend ADAS in the direction of autonomous driving, MIPI specifications will continue to evolve and deploy where they fit. Radar (millimeter wave radio) and Lidar (light) sensor subsystems also require the transfer of large amounts of data. These systems can use MIPI interfaces to transmit data from the Analog Front End connected to ADC/Baseband and signal processing components or directly to the system-level fusion processing systems where appropriate action can be initiated.
In applications like adaptive cruise control, the MIPI CSI-2 interface fits perfectly to connect the RF front end to the radar processor (for example, the NXP S32R27, which uses Mixel MIPI D-PHY to connect to NXP RF front end devices like the MR3003).