Reduce Driver Distraction With Low-cost Gesture-responding HMIs

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automotive HMi
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New 3D gesture recognition controller offers a low-cost chip solution for advanced automotive HMI designs.

As automobiles become more sophisticated, the consumer’s expectations of interacting with the vehicles are rising. The potential of three-dimensional (3D) gesture recognition is enabling new ways to interact with the vehicle in order to improve vehicle safety and create compelling customer experiences.

To solve today’s demanding human-machine interface (HMI) implementation problems for carmakers, Microchip has unveiled a new 3D gesture recognition controller which the company says is AEC-Q100-qualified and offers the lowest system cost in the automotive industry.

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The MGC3140 is a capacitive air gesture controller suited for a range of applications that limit driver distraction and add convenience to vehicles. It is ideal for navigating infotainment systems, sun shade operation, interior lighting and other applications. The technology also supports the opening of foot-activated rear liftgates and any other features a manufacturer wishes to incorporate with a simple gesture action.

“Car manufacturers are increasingly seeking ways to reduce driver distraction through implementing functional safety technology in vehicles. Many Human Machine Interface (HMI) designers are turning to gesture recognition as a solution to improve driver and vehicle safety without sacrificing interior design, adding features that allow drivers to easily control everything from switching on lights to answering phone calls while focusing on the road”, Microchip said in the announcement.

Additionally, the chip features an operating temperature range of -40 to +125 degrees Celsius, and it meets the strict electromagnetic interference (EMI) and electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) requirements of automotive system designs.

Citing further benefits of the new product, Microchip said: “While existing solutions such as infrared and time-of-flight technologies can be costly and operate poorly in bright or direct sunlight, the MGC3140 offers reliable sensing in full sunlight and harsh environments.”

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Further, the company said that other solutions on the market also come with physical constraints and require significant infrastructure and space to be integrated in a vehicle. In contrast, the MGC3140 is compatible with ergonomic interior designs and enables HMI designers to innovate with fewer physical constraints, as the sensor can be any conductive material and hidden from view.

Development Tools

The company offers the Emerald evaluation kit for the 3D gesture recognition controller. it includes a reference Printed Circuit Board (PCB) with the MGC3140 controller, a PCB-based sensor to recognise gestures, as well as all needed cables, software and documentation.

Pricing and Availability

The MGC3140 is available now in sampling and volume production quantities. Pricing is available upon request.

 

 

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