Artificial Intelligence

Laser diode driver is suited for automotive HUDs

1st June 2016
Nat Bowers

Projecting full-HD colour video onto the windshield at nearly twice the current of competitive solutions, the ISL78365 laser diode driver has been announced by Intersil. The ISL78365 pulses four high intensity lasers up to 750mA for automotive HUD systems. The device’s higher current and faster switching speed enables HUDs with high resolution, high colour-depth and high frame-rate projections.

Laser HUDs are the latest innovation in ADAS. A HUD keeps drivers focused on the road, safely providing speed, warning signals and other vital vehicle and navigation information on the windshield directly in the driver’s line of sight. The new-gen augmented reality laser HUDs offer near-zero latency and a wide field of view. They overlay additional real-time information such as traffic signs and a planned turning lane, virtually painting arrows and lines on the road ahead to make navigation directions obvious and easy to follow.

The quad-channel ISL78365 is a complete solution for driving lasers in the scanned-MEMS laser projection systems being deployed in next generation autos. It is claimed as the industry’s only laser driver with a fourth channel for supporting a wide variety of laser diode configurations, allowing system designers to achieve the desired brightness and sharp, rich colours with high contrast. The ISL78365 provides sub-1.5ns rise and fall times for faster switching speed than competitive devices, resulting in high frame rate, HD colour video. The device also offers 10-bit colour and 10-bit scale resolution to support a wide variety of contrast levels for each driver channel. And its flexible synchronous parallel video interface supports pixel rates up to 150MHz or 1900 pixels per line.

The ISL78365’s dynamic power management optimises the laser-diode power supply and offers three power saving modes for improved efficiency and reduced power dissipation to meet system thermal requirements. The programmable multi-pulse return to zero feature reduces speckling, and the device’s wettable flank QFN package simplifies integration into compact laser projection HUDs.

Philip Chesley, Senior Vice President, Precision Products, Intersil, commented: “The ISL78365 offers carmakers the high drive capability, switching speed and colour video accuracy that’s enabling advanced laser heads-up displays for today’s luxury vehicles and tomorrow’s mid-range car models. Our feature-rich laser diode driver minimises system size and complexity while delivering significantly higher performance than the competition.”

The quad-channel ISL78365 laser diode driver is available now in a 6x6mm 40-lead WFQFN package, priced at $9.82 each in 1,000 unit quantities.

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