Automotive Electronics will “Drive” the Applications Focus at electronica 2006

20th July 2006
ES Admin
Munich Trade Fairs International (MMI), the organiser behind the World’s largest and most successful trade fair for the global electronics industry, continues to develop the event’s focus on key applications areas with the news that electronica 2006 will headline the rapidly growing automotive electronics sector. electronica automotive presents an Automotive Conference organised to begin the day before electronica opens its doors as well as a focused exhibition area and a Forum which will be the platform for information exchange.
The rapidly growing automotive electronics sector will take centre stage at electronica 2006 – held at the New Munich Trade Fair Centre from November 14 to 17. electronica 2006 will occupy a total of 152,000m² across 14 exhibition halls and the organisers are confident that more than 75000 visitors will get the opportunity to view the products and services of more than 3000 exhibitors.

The focus given to applications sectors such as Automotive Electronics continues electronica’s drive towards highlighting those areas that will provide the electronics industry with significant growth in the years to come. In addition to Automotive Electronics, electronica 2006 will highlight Wireless Technology, Embedded Systems and the wide ranging topic that is MicroNanoWorld where electronica 2006 will bring together those components, systems and applications that are based on micro/nano technology.

electronica automotive comprises an Automotive Conference – held from 13 to 15 November in the ICM which is adjacent to the main exhibition as well as in hall A6 a focused exhibition and a Forum, which will be the platform for information exchange. Prominent automotive electronics exhibitors at electronica 2006 include Robert Bosch, Cherry, STMicroelectronics, Freescale, Renesas, Infineon, Elmos Semiconductor and Freudenberg Mektec and Green Hills Software.

The Automotive Conference will present current and future trends in automotive electronics and will commence with a keynote introduction by Prof. Dr. Gunther Hertel, Vice President, Research Technology Management at DaimlerChrysler AG. Other speakers will come from Infineon, Renesas and Delphi.

Delegates at the Conference and visitors to the User Forum are guaranteed to be able to see and discuss the very latest developments in electronics as they affect the automotive industry. Some of these topics are discussed below.

Automotive background
Safety systems represent one of the major markets in the automotive electronics sector. Automatic systems top the list, with devices such as airbags, passenger restraints, anti-lock brakes, traction and stability control. Increasingly important today, are systems provided to help the driver, including lane-departure warnings, adapative cruise control, blind spot warnings and predictive radars.

The critical electronics technologies in this sector are sensors and microcontrollers, essential for controlling and monitoring performance and safety. Having already pervaded all aspects of the vehicle, sensors and microcontrollers are undergoing radical change. They are the focus of some of the most advanced research worldwide, benefitting from the latest micro/nano technology developments including MEMS (microelectromechanical systems) and advanced materials. Watch out for a whole new range of sensor based automotive applications to emerge, as sensors, capacitors and microcontrollers combine in miniaturised, rugged packages that can be mass produced at low cost.

Meanwhile, the need for error-free software has set specific challenges for embedded system developers. Green Hills Software, recognised as leaders in RTOS products for safety critical applications will present its latest embedded software solutions for automotive products.

Another hot topic, and the subject of major, multinational research projects, is Telematics, which has huge growth potential. The ability to transmit data to and from vehicles is becoming increasingly strategic, not only for vehicle diagnostics/prognostics, safety systems, traffic management and driver information systems, but also for integrating external mobile systems, such as cell phones and infotainment devices.

When it comes to moving data around the vehicle, automotive OEMs are eagerly anticipating the impact of the latest data bus technology, FlexRay. Designed to meet the demand for high data rate networks due to increased electronic content, FlexRay is taking the automotive world by storm. FlexRay is already available as semiconductor IP and on Freescale microcontrollers, and has further support from Philips and Siemens. With the support of BMW and DaimlerChrysler and more recently, Bosch, GM, Ford, Volkswagen and Audi, plus the promise of FlexRay-enabled cars before the end of this year, it is certainly a technology likely to succeed.

Wireless technologies (the ‘killer application’ in other markets) have been slow to take off in automotive systems. The fear of electrical interference and the need for greater security measures have limited its application. But this is set to change, and soon! Bluetooth, for hands-free mobile ‘phone operation is leading the breakthrough. Swift to follow, and with tremendous development potential, is the area of reliable and secure wireless sensor networks. Already, the early results of research look promising. OEMs and systems companies will be watching closely for showcase products later this year.

Europe’s automotive market is the second largest in the World playing an important part in driving the financial health of the region’s economy and many of the cars and trucks designed and manufactured in Europe enjoy significant sales success throughout the World. But it is through the influence that Europe’s automotive design community has on the World’s car and truck industry that gives it its global technology applications leadership. Manufacturers like Mercedes-Benz, Volvo, BMW, Jaguar and Renault lead the industry in the use of technology to make their vehicles safer, more reliable and more enjoyable to drive. As well as the car and truck manufacturers themselves, Europe boasts large numbers of design houses working alongside the Global automotive industry to develop the vehicles of tomorrow. electronica 2006 will be the venue to see and discuss how electronic products and systems will influence future car and truck design.

Additional information and details about visiting or exhibiting at electronica 2006 are available from Pattern Ltd, MMI’s UK office for all of its Trade Fairs. The contact is Roger Sherman who can be reached on +44 (0)208 940 4625 or

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