Laboratory Opens Industry's First Automotive Ethernet Consortium
DURHAM, N.H.--The University of New Hampshire InterOperability Laboratory (UNH-IOL), an independent provider of broad-based testing and standards conformance services for the networking industry, today announced the launch of the Automotive Ethernet Consortium, paving the way for semiconductor companies to address stringent requirements of the automotive industry for next generation in-vehicle networking. The OPEN Alliance (One-Pair Ether-Net) Special Interest Group (SIG) endorses the UNH-IOL as the first laboratory to test BroadR-Reach®, a standard that will achieve 100Mbps Ethernet connectivity in automotive networking applications.
"The OPEN Alliance is comprised of more than 70 leading technology and automotive member companies that share a common goal to drive wide-scale adoption of Ethernet-based automotive connectivity. The UNH-IOL's extensive and highly-regarded experience in Ethernet testing and the technical team's early involvement in the standards development process were key factors in our approval of the laboratory for BroadR-Reach testing," said Dr. Kirsten Matheus, Ethernet Project Manager, BMW, and OPEN Alliance SIG Chair. "Standardization of the world's first automotive solution capable of delivering 100Mbps Ethernet connectivity over unshielded cabling will revolutionize in-car networking with the goal of creating the ultimate in-vehicle experience for consumers, but these opportunities will only be possible with the help of reliable, trusted partners like the UNH-IOL."
The integration of more features and sophisticated applications such as on-board diagnostics, advanced navigation and voice-recognition in automobiles, spurred by consumer demand, increases network complexity and the need for high-bandwidth connectivity, making a reliable, flexible and scalable in-car network indispensible. The BroadR-Reach standard allows multiple in-vehicle systems to simultaneously access and share information over a single pair, unshielded cable. As BroadR-Reach only uses one pair of UTP cables and as it can potentially rely on the same connectors and cables used by other networking technologies in cars, connectivity costs can be reduced by up to 80 percent and cabling weight by up to 30 percent according to Broadcom Corporation, developer of the BroadR-Reach standard and a founding member of the OPEN Alliance.
Migration from multiple closed applications to a single open, scalable Ethernet-based network within the automobile also allows manufacturers to incorporate more electronic systems and devices, creating a superior connected experience behind the wheel. For consumers, this means availability of new, innovative features for safety (i.e. 360-degree surround view parking assistance, rear-view cameras and collision avoidance systems and eventually automated driving); comfort and infotainment (access to social media applications via dashboard); as well as improved fuel efficiency and performance, and greater affordability.
As an independent organization, the UNH-IOL is committed to neutral testing of standards like BroadR-Reach to ensure credible results. As members of the Automotive Ethernet Consortium, semiconductor companies can verify that their chips meet the requirements of the BroadR-Reach standard. Although testing is currently only available to semiconductor companies, the UNH-IOL plans to open membership to parts suppliers and automotive manufacturers as adoption of the BroadR-Reach standard progresses. By testing together in the same consortium members save on research and development costs and minimize risk associated with new technology adoption. In addition, they have a first mover advantage in preparing their products for market in advance of the BroadR-Reach standard's wide-scale industry adoption.
In June of 2012, at the UNH-IOL, semiconductor companies completed the first round of conformance testing, demonstrating adherence to the BroadR-Reach standard. Aside from conformance testing, the lab is actively developing interoperability specifications for the BroadR-Reach standard in-conjunction with the OPEN Alliance. In addition, the lab will collaborate with the organization to define future testing procedures and establish higher data rate specification requirements.
The UNH-IOL has been conducting Ethernet testing for nearly 25 years and remains at the forefront of evolving Ethernet technologies for the automotive industry and beyond. By operating one of the world's most comprehensive Ethernet test beds, the UNH-IOL is the de facto standard for knowledge and experience in Ethernet testing. For more information about the new Automotive Ethernet Consortium, please visit: https://www.iol.unh.edu/services/testing/ae.
About the UNH-IOL
Founded in 1988, the UNH-IOL provides independent, broad-based interoperability and standards conformance testing for data, telecommunications and storage networking products and technologies. Combining extensive staff experience, standards bodies participation and a 32,000+ square foot facility, the UNH-IOL helps companies efficiently and cost effectively deliver products to the market. For more information, visit http://www.iol.unh.edu/, or connect with the UNH-IOL on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/UNHIOL, on Twitter at @UNH_IOL and on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/company/unh-interoperability-lab.