Memory // Storage

Enriching the Automotive Experience

By Edward Chow - 2019-09-09

Increasingly, today’s car buyers are making their purchasing decisions based on the availability of advanced luxury features and functions. A well-appointed cabin with state-of-the-art immersive displays and human-machine interface (HMI) technology is becoming a key focal point for consumers and OEMs.

HMI, a form of artificial intelligence (AI), connects multiple, independent sweeping displays based on advanced OLED technologies to enable voice, gesture and facial recognition. As more AI is adopted into cars, the interior will be customized to occupants. AI will learn and remember the likes and dislikes of both passengers and driver. Facial recognition will identify the driver and passengers and configure the car for them regarding favorite radio stations, video preferences, seat positions, dashboard displays and more. The car will also respond to voice, gestures and driver’s state (such as tired, angry or cold).

To support these capabilities, a connected vehicle is estimated to need around 1 terabyte of data storage. This data (instructions, recordings, learnings and other) will be stored in nonvolatile storage units. Due to performance, operating temperature, and quality and reliability, manufacturers are increasingly turning to PCIe SSDs to meet data-storage requirements.


Compared to other nonvolatile NAND solutions, PCIe has faster sequential read and write performance. (Sequential read is how fast large, contiguous blocks of data are read from adjacent locations by a NAND device; sequential read and write are two attributes typically used to benchmark different types of NAND memory.) When tested in Micron labs, PCIe SSDs outperformed UFS and e.MMC storage devices in both sequential read and write, as shown below.

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Operating Temperature

According to, if it’s 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 C) outside on a sunny day, after a half-hour, the temperature inside a car can reach 104 degrees (40 C). After one hour, it can reach 113 degrees (45 C). The electronic components in a car must be able to withstand this extreme temperature. Micron PCIe SSDs have optimized performance and endurance across a wide range of operating temperatures ( 40 C to 105 C [ 40 F to 221 F] and 40 C to 95 C [ 40 F to 203 F]).

Chart 1

Quality and Reliability

To be used in automotive applications, memory devices must be designed and tested to exact standards. Micron is the leading memory supplier to the automotive industry, and our PCIe SSDs are AEC-Q100, IATF 16949-compliant.

Micron is actively developing and delivering next-generation memory solutions that provide both the performance and robustness required to support automotive AI features. With almost 30 years of support and leadership in the automotive market, Micron has a rich heritage of delivering best-in-class automotive memory solutions for today’s and tomorrow’s state-of-the-art vehicles.

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Bruce Franklin

Edward Chow

Edward Chow is the senior product line manager in Micron’s Embedded Business Unit. He has worked in various applications engineering and marketing roles in the flash memory industry for over 20 years. Chow holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from University of California, Davis.