MEMS scanner enables compact head-up displays

August 09, 2021 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
MEMS scanner enables compact head-up displays
Chip manufacturer Infineon has developed a combination of MEMS mirrors and associated driver electronics that makes the development of head-up displays for vehicles much easier and cheaper. In addition, the entire windscreen can be used as a projection surface.

Infineon's MEMS scanner chipset contains a swivelling mirror that could lay the foundation for a new generation of laser beam scanner projectors for head-up displays. This allows digital information to be projected into the driver's field of vision - one of the most important applications of augmented reality in the field of automotive technology. Infineon's chipset is expected to outperform alternative system designs and competing MEMS scanner solutions in terms of compactness and low power consumption. System costs are also more competitive, the manufacturer promises.

Limited dashboard space is a key challenge in developing and integrating head-up displays (HUDs) into cars. Conventional HUD systems can require more than 30 litres of optical volume in the dashboard and still offer only a very limited field of view. In contrast, laser beam scanners based on Infineon's new chip solution enable sophisticated augmented reality (AR) HUD systems with minimal space requirements. This feature set enables AR HUDs with a large field of view even in small car and compact class vehicles thanks to easy integration and lower unit costs.

"Augmented reality solutions underpin the real environment with digital information and help people to move more comfortably and safely in road traffic," explains Charles Chan, responsible for the automotive MEMS product line at Infineon. "Road maps, information or messages projected onto the glasses guide people to the desired destination. Safety and comfort while driving also increases by superimposing relevant information from driver assistance systems or route navigation; this can now be displayed across the entire windscreen of the vehicle instead of in a small area in front of the driver."

Infineon's new MEMS scanner chipset also enables the design of lightweight AR microdisplays that can even be integrated into everyday and sports eyewear. Due to the low power consumption of the chipset, it is sufficient to integrate small batteries into the frame of the glasses. This means you can wear the glasses all day

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