Using trial and error to determine and verify product reliability is a dated methodology. The Design-Build-Test-Fix (DBTF) approach is time-consuming, costly and makes engineers reactive instead of proactive in pursuit of reliability – a detriment to automotive electronics and other applications that must meet the functionality and lifespan expectations of an increasingly demanding consumer base.
Designing new products right on the first attempt is a key objective for accelerating and optimizing automotive electronics and other product development. Upfront knowledge of how and why failures can occur makes it possible for products to be created with less susceptibility to failure risks. This approach, known as Design for Reliability (DfR), is based on understanding failure mechanisms by applying the Physics of Failure (PoF).
Automotive electronics are routinely exposed to harsh environments that introduce internal and external factors that could cause failure. Of particular concern is thermal cycling since automobiles are ideally designed to last more than a decade, during which time regular and frequently major temperature fluctuations occur. Long-term product life combined with prolonged thermal cycling present unique failure risks.
In 1965, Intel® co-founder Gordon Moore noted that the number of transistors per square inch on integrated circuits (IC) doubled every year since their invention.
Vehicle technology is rapidly becoming a key differentiator in the automotive industry. To stay ahead of the competition, manufacturers are tasked with devising new ways to optimize automotive electronics without compromising components or performance.
Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) are increasingly used in safety-critical vehicle systems. This introduces new and evolving silicon and semiconductor packaging technology, and greater failure risk. Computer-aided engineering (CAE) tools are needed to evaluate, eliminate or mitigate susceptibilities to failure modes during MEMS device design.
Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) tools are comprehensive, making them exceptional options for determining design properties and performance through an array of engineering analysis tasks, including:
Electronics integration is prevalent in many markets, perhaps none more so than the automotive industry. As a result, physics-based computer aided engineering (CAE) tools have taken vehicle, subsystem and component evaluations off the road and into the lab, allowing for increased design complexities – and necessitating major reliability testing process changes.