ADI and BMW to provide 10Mb ethernet for automotive, enabling software-defined vehicles

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Analog Devices and BMW have announced an early adoption of E²B™, ADI's 10BASE-T1S Ethernet to the Edge bus technology within the automotive industry.

Automotive Ethernet connectivity is a key enabler of new, zonal architectures in automotive design and supports key automotive trends such as software-defined vehicles. The BMW Group will be one of the first original equipment manufacturers (OEM) to implement the technology, leveraging ADI’s E²B for their ambient lighting system design. 

Since 2018, ADI has been working closely with BMW on a new concept to simplify bringing Ethernet to the Edge. At the same time, the IEEE802.3cg Group was defining a new 10Mbps Ethernet standard called 10BASE-T1S, with ADI and BMW among other companies both actively involved.

Using ADI’s 10BASE-T1S E²B technology to remove microcontrollers and move software from edge nodes to central processing units, BMW is looking to enable an all-hardware edge node while reducing software development and qualification tasks. 

“While working alongside ADI on 10BASE-T1S E²B, we joined efforts on a number of key considerations, from simplifying implementation, to cost analysis and design support. The relationship with ADI has enabled us to move more quickly to market with a solution of a zonal architecture for software-defined vehicles,” the BMW Group stated.

“We continue to deeply engage with BMW to understand their next-generation needs and bring further optimised products to aid next-generation architectures, as well as bring continued cooperation on standardisation," said Yasmine King, Vice President, Automotive Cabin Experience at ADI. “10BASE-T1S E²B is a great new addition to our automotive connectivity and networking portfolio, innovated to drive success across different use cases, with the flexibility and scalability to support zonal, domain and hybrid architectures.” 

In-cabin experience continues to be a critical focus for automakers, with driver and passenger expectations becoming more refined. This is especially true of the ambient lighting within the vehicle. 

However, many of today’s lighting solutions are too complex to implement, use legacy technologies, and are difficult to scale and update as the number of supported LEDs increases. Consequently, by leveraging the 10BASE-T1S with E²B technology, OEMs will be able to provide a richer customer experience while also synchronising lighting with other applications in the vehicle. Fully enabling a software-defined lighting system will provide improved flexibility, ease of upgrade, and ease of use.

“This approach to edge connectivity is so sought-after that the automotive industry inside the Open Alliance is now aiming to standardise a similar solution. ADI, along with BMW and other companies, are actively working with the industry to create an Open Standard implementation,” said Yasmine King.