HomeNewsUnlock Safety without Breaking the Bank: Introducing MLX90427 Position Sensing for Steer-by-Wire

Unlock Safety without Breaking the Bank: Introducing MLX90427 Position Sensing for Steer-by-Wire

May 15, 2024
May 15, 2024

Melexis has introduced the MLX90427, a magnetic position sensor designed for embedded applications that require high functional safety levels. The sensor is part of Melexis' magnetic position sensor portfolio and offers customer stray field immunity, electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) robustness, and cost-effectiveness. It features an SPI output with four distinct modes, including rotary, joystick, rotary stray field with internal angle computation, and raw data output, making it ideal for steer-by-wire applications.


As the automotive market places increasing emphasis on digitizing control systems for vehicle electrification and advanced autonomous capabilities, the demands on sensors are evolving. Position sensors play a critical role in innovations like steer-by-wire systems, where mechanical linkages between the steering wheel and steering rack are eliminated. These sensors must exhibit exceptional reliability, functional safety, and accuracy. In electric vehicles, the requirements for sensors are further heightened, necessitating excellent EMC robustness and stray field immunity while also being cost-effective and easy to integrate.



The MLX90427 is Melexis' next-generation magnetic position sensing IC designed specifically to meet the technical requirements of the automotive industry. It incorporates Melexis' expertise in automotive Hall effect sensing. The core of the MLX90427 is the Triaxis hall magnetic sensing element, which detects movement of any magnet in its vicinity by sensing three components of flux density (Bx, By, and Bz). It is supported by an analog-to-digital converter (ADC), a robust digital signal processor (DSP) for signal processing, and an output stage driver for SPI signal output.


The MLX90427 offers four operating modes, including rotary mode with two performance ranges, joystick mode for 3D position sensing applications, and a 360-degree stray field immune mode for continuous rotational feedback in noisy environments. This versatility allows the sensor to be used in various applications within a vehicle, such as steering, gearbox shifting, and human-machine interfaces (HMIs) like infotainment control knobs. The MLX90427 is designed to be reliable and supports safety requirements, including AEC-Q100 qualification (Grade 0) and ISO26262 ASIL C SEooC (safety element out of context) for up to ASIL D system level integration. It can be deployed in safety-critical applications alongside sensors utilizing different sensing technologies to achieve the highest levels of functional safety through heterogeneous redundancy.


The MLX90427 is designed for easy integration and features a high-speed full-duplex SPI output for communication with a master microcontroller. It is compatible with 5V and 3V3 applications and offers a wide operating temperature range of -40°C to 160°C. Built-in self-diagnostics enhance system safety by enabling swift fault reporting.


Melexis' MLX90427 combines robustness, cost-effectiveness, and high accuracy, making it suitable for the next generation of vehicle control systems. The sensor is not only applicable to automotive applications but also offers advanced functionality and a competitive price point for wider applications.


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