Fujitsu unveils powerful MCU with secure hardware extension for automotive instrument clusters

Fujitsu Semiconductor Europe (FSEU) has expanded its scalable line-up for automotive instrument clusters, covering everything from MCUs for traditional clusters up to 3D graphic systems on chips (SoC), as well as being capable of driving virtual or free programmable clusters. The newest member, the MB9DF125, nicknamed “Atlas-L”, is based on the well-established ARM Cortex-R4 core and includes a Secure Hardware Extension (SHE) module offering customers secure high-performance operation. The SHE block is fully hardware-implemented to ensure the highest levels of security.

The new MCU, developed in Fujitsu”s MCU Competence Centre at Langen (near Frankfurt), will enable driver information systems with larger feature sets that can run more sophisticated software solutions while supporting the AUTOSAR specification. “Atlas-L” has been optimised for key industry issues such as safety, security and power consumption. The MCU is designed to operate as a single-chip solution for traditional instrument clusters without graphics or as a companion chip alongside Fujitsu”s “Emerald” SoCs for hybrid or freely-programmable (virtual) automotive instrument clusters.

Operating at up to 128 MHz, the “Atlas-L” core offers processing power of more than 200 DMIPS, together with 1 MB of flash memory and 128 KB of RAM. “Atlas-L” will be delivered in a LQFP-176 package. As with other devices within the FCR4 family, “Atlas-L” includes the safety, security and power-saving features demanded by automotive customers.

The Secure Hardware Extension is a cryptographic module that complies with the specification of the Hersteller (i.e. manufacturer) Initiative Software (HIS) consortium, whose members include Audi, BMW, Daimler, Porsche and Volkswagen. The hardware-implemented SHE module in “Atlas-L” permits Tier 1 automotive suppliers and car manufacturers to design software manipulation countermeasures in electronic control units and even prevent the theft of these units. Some of the initial applications utilising this cryptographic unit will include immobiliser and keyless entry systems, plus feature activation/remote services (such as remote diagnostics or software update services).

The SHE module feature in “Atlas-L” complies with SHE Functional Specification v1.1, rev. 439 (including errata and amendments). It features secure boot using a cipher-based message authentication code (CMAC), plus the Miyaguchi-Preneel compression function inside the SHE block. The MCU contains a true random number generator, a separate storage area acting as a secure repository for non-volatile keys and RAM keys (therefore also offering secure key management and update), plus dedicated logic for the encryption of data using the highly secure AES standard with a 128-bit key length. Also able to prevent manipulation during application runtime, it provides a unique device identifier and a secure environment for cryptographic algorithms.

“Atlas-L” also offers additional device security, including secure handling of the TRACE and JTAG ports, plus flash memory security.


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