More Energy Efficient Electric Bicycles are a New Growth Market for Infineon
Neubiberg, Germany – August 29, 2007 – A new business opportunity for Infineon Technologies (FSE/NYSE: IFX) opens up, as a product innovation is ready for design-in: an 8-bit microcontroller for electric bicycles (e-bikes). The market for the electric bicycles accounts for more than 18.5 million bikes for 2007 and shows an annual growth rate of 25 percent. E-bikes are equipped with a battery pack that frees the riders from pedaling. Due to its convenience, environmental-friendliness, and high performance-cost ratio, e-bikes have received an increasing demand from bicyclists around the world.
“With more than 10 percent market share, Infineon is in the leading position for new electric bicycles,” said Ching Yen Shih, Senior Director, Industrial and Multimarket microcontrollers at Infineon. ”Our microcontrollers increase the energy efficiency of the battery pack and manage all functions of the e-bike control system.”
At the heart of the e-bike control unit, an 8-bit microcontroller controls the motor operation and ensures the most efficient use of the energy. With one fully-charged battery, an e-bike with a load of up to 100 kg can travel approximately 40 km at an average speed of 25 km per hour. With a clock rate of 27 MHz and high performance peripherals, such as high speed analog-to-digital converters, dedicated motor control units using the Infineon XC866 family of microcontrollers offers an optimized solution for e-bike control board designers. The high performance also enables them to realize abundant functions to meet various end-user requirements, such as remote unlocking, e-brake, intelligent dashboard. The bike also operates under every weather condition, as the temperature range of the chip extends from -40 degrees Celsius to +125 degrees Celsius.
The next-generation of the e-bike control units, which are used on the designer’s drawing boards, will be available early next year, and will be equipped with a new version of the microcontroller with 8 kByte of memory.
This extended memory capacity allows for more “intelligent” operations and will eliminate the use of three hall sensors used for the motor position feedback, required by the current control algorithm. In addition to the system cost savings, the sensorless solution will significantly reduce the maintenance efforts for the e-bike manufacturers, as approximately 80 percent of e-bike malfunctions today are caused by the failure of these sensors.
“With its broad variety of input / output ports, timers and highly accurate 10-bit analoge / digital converter, the XC866 offers 16-bit-performance for 8-bit cost,” said Shih.
Infineon Technologies AG, Neubiberg, Germany, offers semiconductor and system solutions addressing three central challenges to modern society: energy efficiency, communications and security. In fiscal year 2006 (ending September), the company achieved sales of Euro 7.9 billion (including Qimonda sales of Euro 3.8 billion) with approximately 42,000 employees worldwide (including approximately 12,000 Qimonda employees). With a global presence, Infineon operates through its subsidiaries in the US from Milpitas, CA, in the Asia-Pacific region from Singapore, and in Japan from Tokyo. Infineon is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: IFX).
At the heart of an e-bike control unit a 8-bit microcontroller from Infineon controls the motor operation and ensures the most efficient use of the energy. With one fully charged battery an e-bike with a load of up to 100 kg can travel some 40 km at an average speed of 25 km per hour.ebike_with_Infineon
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With more than 18 million e-bikes this year alone they already have become a convenient commodity. As pictured here on the streets of Beijing one can see lots of them already beeing used.ebike_in_Peking
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