When electronic vehicle systems fail, it’s often not the fault of microcontrollers, memories or integrated circuits. By watching for some of the following problems, designers can often boost reliability of end products, especially in automobiles.
Minimize connections. There’s a high correlation between reliability and the number of electrical connections made at an assembly plant. A dashboard with ten connections, for example, is likely to be more reliable than one with 50 connections.
Make sure wires don’t rub against sharp pieces of metal.
Ensure connections go together with an audible snap. If assemblers hear the snap, they know it’s connected.
Design in reliability at the beginning. Usually, if a car starts out reliable in its first model year, it stays that way.
One of the biggest walls in embedded software development is the integration of low-level drivers with higher-level middleware and application code, but silicon vendors are stepping up to bring it down.
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