Infineon Introduces Microcontroller Multicore Architecture for Automotive Applications

Oct 12, 2011 | Market News

Neubiberg, Germany – October 12, 2011 – Infineon Technologies AG (FSE: IFX / OTCQX: IFNNY) today introduced its 32-bit microcontroller (MCU) multicore architecture. The new architecture is the foundation of Infineon’s next generation MCU family that will fulfill the requirements of upcoming automotive powertrain and safety applications. The multicore architecture features up to three processor cores to share the application load, introduces lockstep cores and contains further enhanced hardware safety mechanisms. A first implementation of the architecture is available to selected customers for architecture exploration and early prototyping.

Built for Performance

Based on the existing TriCore™ processor of Infineon, the new multicore architecture sets another benchmark for real-time performance in automotive applications. It contains up to three TriCore processor cores connected over a crossbar running at the full CPU speed and avoiding hardware contentions. Additionally, the architecture implements multiple program Flash modules with independent read interfaces which further support the real-time capability.

Additional innovations of the architecture comprise a new easily applicable and powerful timer module which offloads the CPUs, and new Analog to Digital Converters including Delta Sigma converters with a high accuracy and a high sampling rate.

The 65nm embedded Flash silicon process technology and the microcontroller architecture are designed to balance increased performance with the need for lower power consumption. Additional low power modes are supported to enable very low standby current consumption.

Built for Safety

Infineon’s multicore architecture introduces leading edge methods to efficiently meet the newly introduced ISO 26262 Automotive safety standard. Design, implementation and documentation are focused for compliance to the highest Automotive Safety Integrity Level (ASIL D). This ensures that safety system development efforts are reduced to a minimum.

Two of the three TriCore CPUs feature additional Lockstep cores which can be independently configured. Further implemented safety techniques include, for example, safe internal communication buses, a Bus Monitoring Unit, and both error detection code (EDC) and error correction code (ECC) on all memories. A distributed memory protection system operates on core level, bus level and on peripheral level. These enhanced encapsulation techniques allow the integration of software with mixed criticality levels from different sources, allowing seamless hosting of multiple applications and operating systems on a unified platform.

Built for Security

The multicore architecture features a hardware security module (HSM) to meet upcoming security requirements to better protect automotive applications from tampering or potential hacking attacks. The HSM uses leading edge hardware-based security technology developed by Infineon.

65nm embedded Flash Technology

The 65nm embedded Flash technology is designed for highest reliability in the harsh automotive environment. End-of-line programming speed of the embedded Flash is up to 20 times faster than in the previous generation of Infineon’s microcontrollers. This is especially important due to the increased amount of embedded Flash required by automotive systems.

Development Device is available

The first implementation of the multicore architecture, the Development Device, is now available for prototyping to selected customers. Automotive system suppliers can start now to explore the multicore architecture’s features and develop their multicore software implementation. The 65nm Development Device contains three TriCore CPUs, two of them with lockstep implementation, and 4MByte of embedded Flash.

Next-generation 65nm eFlash MCU family with multicore architecture

The novel multicore architecture will be used in the next generation 65nm eFlash microcontroller family AURIX™. The family will be highly scalable with devices of up to 300MHz in clock frequency and up to 8MB of embedded Flash. With its high real-time performance, embedded safety and security features the microcontroller family is ideally suited for applications such as the control of combustion engines, electrical and hybrid vehicles, transmission control units, chassis domains, braking systems, electrical power steering systems, airbags and advanced driver assistance systems.

First products of the AURIX family are scheduled to be available by mid 2012, with qualification planned in the second half of 2013.

Further information

Further information on Infineon’s automotive semiconductor portfolio and on the automotive microcontrollers are available at and

Infineon is presenting a live demonstration of the Development Device as a first implementation of the multicore architecture at the 15 th International VDI Congress and Exhibition (Kongresshaus, Baden-Baden, Germany, October 12-13, 2011) at the company’s booth #86 on level 2.

About Infineon

Infineon Technologies AG, Neubiberg, Germany, offers semiconductor and system solutions addressing three central challenges to modern society: energy efficiency, mobility, and security. In the 2010 fiscal year (ending September 30), the company reported sales of Euro 3.295 billion with approximately 26,650¹ employees worldwide. With a global presence, Infineon operates through its subsidiaries in the U.S. from Milpitas, CA, in the Asia-Pacific region from Singapore, and in Japan from Tokyo. Infineon is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: IFX) and in the USA on the over-the-counter market OTCQX International Premier (ticker symbol: IFNNY). Further information is available at

¹ Mentioned number of employees contains about 3,075 employees of the wireless mobile phone business (Wireless Solutions), which was sold to Intel Corporation.

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