Cybersecurity considerations for autonomous vehicles sensors with ON Semiconductor

Giri Venkat, Solutions Architect, ON Semiconductor

Giri Venkat, Solutions Architect, ON Semiconductor will be taking to the stage at AutoSens on day two of the main conference addressing Cybersecurity considerations for autonomous vehicles sensors. He took time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions for us.

You’re with us in Brussels talking about Functional Safety with Autonomous Vehicles – why is that important, even for companies new to the industry?

Today, Tier 1s and OEMs demand solutions that are ISO26262 compliant. This is true not only for incumbent suppliers but for new entrants as well. Functional safety has to be part of the design and development process from Day 1 in order to have a truly robust solution.

Can’t everything be picked up in the testing of the system after it’s complete?

ISO26262 addresses faults that arise both from systematic problems as well as from random hardware faults. While system testing can certainly identify some of the systematic problems, manufacturing test does not address the random hardware faults that can occur after deployment. To function safely in the presence of the random hardware faults, the solution must have some level of functional safety designed into the product.

ISO 26262 is well established as the industry benchmark for functional safety in electronic systems within vehicles, what are the most important headlines coming in the second edition?

Well certainly the semiconductor section, Part 11, is one of the biggest additions to the spec. It will give semiconductor manufacturers a more targeted set of guidelines that are specific to the semiconductor development process. I expect this to be a huge benefit for semiconductor development teams.

What challenges can moving to an ISO 26262 framework present, and how can new entrants to the automotive supply chain mitigate them?

Probably the biggest challenge is incorporating a safety mindset at every stage of the development process. From a safe concept to field data collection, addressing functional safety at every step of the product lifecycle is critical to success, and new entrants should consider the impact of adding functional safety to their product line.

Image sensors are pretty standard in new cars in systems like traffic sign recognition, reversing aid and lane keeping, what other features will be coming in the future before full autonomy starts emerging?

The features you listed are primarily driver assistance features. As we get closer to full autonomy, you can expect these features to operate for longer periods of time without human intervention. Not only that, but the features themselves will be able to do more, like from reversing aid to self-park or from having speed or road type restrictions to “always on”. There will also certainly be innovation in terms of adding new features that we may not even be considering right now.

You’ve got a wide background covering everything from communications engineering to 3D graphics, you must feel at home?

The autonomous vehicle space incorporates a variety of technical disciplines and my background lends itself well to the industry.

What can we expect to see from the company in the next 12 months in terms of ADAS and other autonomy-enabling technologies?

As the #1 supplier of image sensors for the automotive market, ON Semi will continue to introduce products that innovate beyond the human eye. We will be pushing the most cutting edge technology in image sensors into the market and help to advance the current state of the industry.

There has been lots of news about driverless cars recently – are there any novel business opportunities left?

There are, and will continue to be, truly unique business opportunities in this market as it continues to grow and evolve. We are still in the early stages of this market and I believe we will see some very unique and innovative products in this space over the next 5 to 10 years.

Why is involvement with AutoSens important for ONSemi?

AutoSens gives us an opportunity to see what our colleagues in the industry are doing as well as to showcase our new technologies for the coming year. It brings together some of the brightest minds in the industry to share and educate each other.

Don’t miss out…

Come and hear Giri Venkat, Solutions Architect and meet ON Semiconductor at AutoSens in Brussels (19-21 September) – book your tickets here