Embedded Non-Volatile Memory IP for Automotive Markets


Increasing complexity in automotive systems has driven new applications for low-cost, secure and field-programmable non-volatile memory.  The proliferation of sensors to monitor everything from environmental conditions to engine control has increased the need for analog calibration and trimming, ideal for non-volatile memory (NVM) technology. Another automotive application where Kilopass embedded NVM is used is for code storage for all the various microcontrollers and DSPs used to control various aspects of the car’s operating systems. Finally, in-car infotainment systems are now rivaling many home entertainment systems and will require the same media content protection using security keys. Typical NVM capacities for automotive applications range from 1kbit to +4Mbit and target all process nodes from 180nm and below.

Automotive Market Summary

Market OTP usage End Product Kilopass Advantage
Automotive Calibration, trimming, code storage, security keys Control systems, DSPs, in-car communications, and infotainment systems
  • High reliability
  • Best in class security
  • Ultra-low power

DSPs are used in automotive applications to process real-time sensor data to control engine performance, safety systems, and electric motors and power balancing for hybrid electric vehicles. These applications require different sets of algorithms which can be stored in NVM as program code.

Kilopass NVM IP in DSP Chip

Kilopass’ embedded NVM technology has been used for:

  • Code storage for microcontrollers and DSPs
  • Calibration and trimming for sensors
  • Security keys for infotainment systems

Cost Savings Comparison

Product OTP usage Before: External EEPROM Total Cost/Unit After: Kilopass NVM Total Cost/Unit Units/Year Savings for 1 year of production
DSP Code storage in 64Kb OTP $0.08 $0.04 30M $1.2M