HDBaseT chip extends PCIe range in cars

June 19, 2018 //By Christoph Hammerschmidt
HDBaseT chip extends PCIe range in cars
Valens, known as developer of HDBaseT for in-car connectivity, ia announcing a PCIe module as an evaluation platform for the transfer of PCIe data via HDBaseT. This technology will play an important role in the introduction of high-performance computers in cars: it enables transmitting large amounts of data over relatively long distances within the vehicle chassis. According to previous planning among automotive OEMs and tier ones, this task should be taken over by Ethernet technology.

The PCIe technology (Perihperal Component Interconnect Express), known from the environment of the venerable Personal Computer, is increasingly gaining supporters among vehicle OEMs: For future high-performance computing architectures with intensive data sharing across multiple domains, PCIe could be the right approach, system designers say. HDBaseT Automotive's ability to use PCIe signals simplifies complex vehicle architectures by optimizing the sharing of electronic control units (ECUs), communication devices, SSDs (solid-state drives).

The PCIe module from Valens tunnels PCIe (3rd generation) data traffic over inexpensive unshielded twin wires measuring up to 15 meters. The PCIe module can also be connected to older PCIe devices, switches or bridges. The PCIe protocol can be used as a powerful high speed, low latency backbone.

For the time being (and as long as high-performance automotive computers are not yet available), key applications for the PCIe module are smart antennas and telematics, as HDBaseT Automotive can connect the numerous antennas on the roof of a car to an ECU safely installed against environmental influences, and this only with unshielded twisted-pair cables (UTP). The PCIe module can also merge other interfaces via the same cable (such as I2S, UART, sideband signals, etc.) as part of the telematics unit.

The PCIe module was developed to demonstrate the feasibility of this technology to OEMs and Tier 1 manufacturers and to demonstrate the advantages of long distance PCIe transmission over thin, flexible and lightweight UTP cables. Valens believes PCIe is an optimal solution for applications such as telematics, ECU-to-ECU and ECU-to-end node and backbone connectivity.


The HDBaseT Automotive PCIe module will be available to customers from the third quarter of 2018.

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