Magnetoresistive Current Sensor
Mixed Signal ASIC doubles Turnover in one Year
Technologies used

Mixed Signal ASIC

Industrial sector (PRODCOM code)
    322 Equipment for industrial automation
The market for current sensor systems is steadily growing in traditional application areas with an additional explosive growth in automotive and domestic applications. Current sensors are used in numerous applications. However, the main application domain is drive control, which is a central aspect of industrial automation. The sensors supply the information for the electronic to control axis position, angle, torque and rotation speed. Without the sensors no immediate feed-back from the drive e.g. on the load could be obtained and control would be less efficient.
The company LUST Antriebstechnik GmbH has penetrated the market with new sensor microsystems based on the magnetoresistive technology. Compared to traditional current sensor technologies these systems offer drastic savings with respect to weight, volume and costs. However the over 100 million US$ market is dominated by conventional sensors. The sensors are used for own products and sold to industrial automation companies, that supply drives and drive control systems as well as complete automation systems.
The standard sensor product family CMS2000, which is already well established in the market, will be replaced by new products, based on a Mixed-Signal ASIC for signal conditioning. The existing sensor families use conventional technologies like discrete components with a lower overall precision and a larger size. However, LUST already used digital ASIC technology in other products. The aim of the FUSE project was the development and integration of a mixed-signal ASIC to integrate the appropriate analog signal conditioning circuitry for the sensor chip, together with digital functions for the system calibration and EEPROM storage of calibration data via a serial interface. This establishes significant improvements in the production process together with savings in production costs and application benefits for the end user. The application benefits for the end user are true RMS current measurement and overcurrent detection. If required, a reduction in size of 50 % can be realized.
Other products of Lust are drives, inverters and complex drive control systems for various requirements and power ranges.
The FUSE experiment with a duration of 15 months assured the technology and know-how transfer by extensive training related to the definition, design and manufacturing of CMOS ASIC's. The subcontractor has experience and is specialized in high performance Mixed Signal CMOS ASIC design and manufacturing as well as in the design and evaluation of magnetic field measurement systems.
The transferred knowledge and experience enables the First User (FU) to develop and design a new family of current sensor products, which establish unique selling properties and will guarantee a pay back period of less than 18 month and a ROI of approximately 90% during the first year of application or of 450% for the estimated lifetime of five years. The profitability can be related mostly to cost saving of about 50 % that are mainly realized through the improvement of the calibration process of the sensor device. Moreover, the ability to use this Mixed Signal CMOS ASIC technology is fundamental for future projects intended to develop sensor systems with improved measurement accuracy and extended signal conditioning functions.
LUST Antriebstechnik GmbH
Gewerbestrasse 5-9
D-35633 Lahnau

Detailed information

You can also benefit from microelectronics

Mixed Signal ASIC technology provided LUST Antriebstechnik GmbH with the means of improving its products and enhancing its market position. You can also achieve significant benefits by acquiring the right microelectronics technology and utilising it in your product or manufacturing process. You can get help from FUSE to realise this.

FUSE is a technology transfer programme, funded by the European Commission to stimulate the wider use of microelectronics technologies by European enterprises to increase their competitiveness and enhance their economic growth. The demonstrator described here is one of many examples in the public FUSE portfolio covering the whole spectrum of microelectronics technologies and spanning a wide range of applications and industry sectors.

FUSE provides you with:

  • Best practice in acquiring specific microelectronics technologies and conducting full development projects through the FUSE portfolio of real life demonstrator documents.
  • Local training and expert support to plan your innovation realistically and help you conduct your project successfully.

Further information and support relating to this and other demonstrators can be obtained from the addresses below.

Further information   Guiding Technology Transfer Node
For further information and support regarding this case study, please contact a Technology Transfer Node (TTN) in your region.
Homepage: http://www.fuse-network.com
Richard-Wagner-Strasse 1
D-38106 Braunschweig