Continental and semiconductor manufacturer Infineon Technologies have announced that they will collaborate on server-centric vehicle architectures. The goal of this partnership is to make the electronics in electric vehicles more organized. They plan to do this with a small number of powerful Zone Control Units (ZCU) instead of hundreds of individual control units with centralized high-performance computers (HPC).
Continental is now using Infineon’s AURIX TC4 microprocessor for the ZCU platform. Thanks to the AURIX TC4’s proprietary storage technology, the vehicle software is at the ready. As soon as the vehicle is started, functions such as parking assist, ventilation, heating and suspension are instantly available. This platform approach supports the diverse requirements of automobile manufacturers. By adjusting the number of HPCs and ZCUs and how they interact with each other, manufacturers can customize their architecture according to the requirements of their vehicles. “The growing variety of vehicle functions requires more and more computing power and increasingly complex software applications. Continental’s new architecture is paving the way for the software-defined vehicle. The cooperation with Infineon is an essential step in realizing this development quickly for our customers.” says Gilles Mabire, CTO Continental Automotive.
The use of powerful Zone Control Units is the next decisive step towards a software-defined vehicle. For Continental, a first major step was the development and delivery of an HPC high-performance computer for the electric vehicle models ID.3 and ID.4 from Volkswagen. The zone control unit platform, to be developed as part of the cooperation with Infineon, forms the middle level of the electrics/electronics architecture between the server level (HPC) and the base level with numerous sensors and actuators.