Dual-die sensor targets safety critical applications

A dual-die, programmable linear Hall sensor IC that suits safety-critical applications has been launched by Allegro MicroSystems Europe.

The A1336 incorporates full die redundancy and full diagnostics. The combination of these two features allow for a higher level of diagnostics without interruption to the application, where diagnostics would otherwise render a die temporarily unresponsive. It also allows the controller to know which die to trust when the two outputs do not agree. 

Dual high-precision, programmable Hall-effect linear sensor integrated circuits with open-drain outputs for automotive and nonautomotive applications are key features of the new device. The signal paths in the A1346 provide flexibility through external programming that allows the generation of accurate and customised outputs from an input magnetic signal.

The A1346 is a configurable and robust solution for demanding linear field sensor applications and comes with a variety of customer reprogrammable options. Each BiCMOS monolithic integrated circuit incorporates a system-on-chip configuration that includes a Hall sensing element, precision temperature compensating circuitry to reduce the intrinsic sensitivity and offset drift of the Hall element, a small-signal high-gain amplifier, proprietary dynamic offset cancellation circuits, advanced output linearisation circuitry, and advanced diagnostic detection.

A key feature of the A1346 is its ability to produce a highly linear device output for nonlinear input magnetic fields. To achieve this, it features 16-segment customer programmable linearisation, where a unique linearisation coefficient factor is applied to each segment. Linearisation coefficients are stored in a lookup table in EEPROM.

Two proprietary SENT protocols in addition to SAEJ2716: SSENT and ASENT are contained within the sensor. Both protocols enable the user to attach up to four devices on one SENT line to reduce system costs. SSENT provides sequential access to the sensors connected to the same line and it provides a low overhead method to maximise the sensor bandwidth on this single SENT line, minimising impact on system performance, while ASENT provides random access to all the sensors on the common SENT line.

Both protocols allow individual sensors on the same line to enter diagnostic mode while the other sensors continue to respond to queries, allowing for the highest diagnostic coverage while maintaining 100 per cent availability of the sensor solution.

This new device is primarily targeted at the automotive market with end applications including EPS torque sensing, braking (pedal travel, piston position and brake wear) and transmission actuator/clutch position sensing.

The A1346 is available in a surface-mount, lead (Pb) free 14-pin TSSOP package (LE suffix), with 100 per cent matt-tin leadframe plating. 



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