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Melexis Reinvents Triaxis® Position Sensors for its mainstream automotive applications

ISO 26262 programmable solutions offer the flexibility to address both linear and rotary movements

Tessenderlo, Belgium, 10 June 2021 – Melexis, a global microelectronics engineering company, has expanded its portfolio of non-contact position sensors, with the addition of two new devices which complement the existing MLX90364/5/6/7 products. The MLX90421 and MLX90422 are based on the company’s proprietary Triaxis® high-accuracy magnetic sensing technology. They have the same key features as the MLX90364/5/6/7 devices, but with some additional enhancements incorporated. Intended for use in cost-sensitive automotive applications including powertrain actuators, pedal positioning, fuel level gauges and transmission systems, though also suitable for industrial implementations, these ICs have superior capabilities in terms of functional safety and electromagnetic compliance (EMC) characteristics. They also support heightened temperature operation.

As well as their magnetic sensing element, the new position sensing ICs each feature built-in data conversion and digital signal processing, as well as a programmable output stage driver. They can be configured for accurately determining position either rotationally or linearly. The MLX90421 provides a ratiometric analog or pulse width modulated (PWM) output, while the MLX90422 delivers a single edge nibble transmission (SENT) output according to SAE J2716.

Their expansive -40°C to 160°C ambient temperature range means that they can be deployed within vehicles that lack the heat dissipation normally found in engine bays, such as hybrid and full electric vehicles. With full adherence to ISO26262 functional safety guidelines, via the safety element out of context (SEooC) approach, the sensor IC supports ASIL-B level. To ensure first-time-right EMC testing, the new ICs offer similar performance to Melexis’ already established MLX9037x product family. Only one test cycle is therefore required, meaning design work can be completed quicker and the associated engineering costs are kept to a minimum. The improved absolute maximum ratings (AMR), such as output protection of -18V/34V and supply protection of -18V/37V, reduces the risk of electrical overstress.

The MLX90421 and MLX90422 can be supplied with a single die in either a SOIC-8 package format or a PCB-less DMP-4. These options are backward compatible with the company’s earlier devices, thereby providing drop-in replacements. A fully redundant dual die TSSOP-16 package is also available for safety-critical situations requiring system redundancy. Further packing options will be announced in October 2021.

About Melexis
Combining a passion for technology with truly inspired engineering, Melexis designs, develops and delivers innovative micro-electronic solutions that enable designers to turn ideas into applications that support the best imaginable future. The company’s advanced mixed-signal semiconductor sensor and actuator components address the challenges of integrating sensing, driving and communication into next-generation products and systems that improve safety, raise efficiency, support sustainability and enhance comfort.

Melexis is a world leader in automotive semiconductor sensors. Today, on average, every new car produced worldwide contains 13 Melexis chips. Melexis has used its core experience to expand its portfolio of sensors and driver ICs. Now they also meet the needs of smart appliances, home automation, industrial and medical applications. Melexis sensing solutions include magnetic sensors, MEMS sensors (pressure, TPMS, infrared), sensor interface ICs, optoelectronic single point and linear array sensors and Time of Flight. The company’s driver IC portfolio incorporates advanced DC & BLDC motor controllers, LED drivers and FET pre-driver ICs, while Melexis has the know-how and expertise to build bridges between components, allowing them to communicate in a clear and fast way.

Melexis is headquartered in Belgium and employs over 1,500 people in 18 locations worldwide. The company is publicly traded on Euronext Brussels (MELE).

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