Ethernet expands into new application areas: The Connected Car

IoT-CityTechnologists around the world have been working for years to create infrastructure and networks to expand connectivity globally with the goal of connecting more people in more ways to improve life. And this dream is coming to realization with the emergence of the Internet of Things with Ethernet and its standards playing a major role in moving this innovation forward.

In the Wired article, The Internet of Things and the Connected Person , Dr. Chuck Adams, 2009-2010 Past President of the IEEE Standards Association says that at the heart of this innovation is not so much a focus on the devices being linked up, but the “connected person” – allowing humans to make use of applications and services that are enabled by these devices. It’s a vision, in which, a person can utilize a smart car to stay connected to the world while reaching a destination efficiently, productively, and safely.

With connected cars expected to reach the road as early as 2020, the publication of IEEE 802.3bw™-2015 100BASE-T1 standard is quite timely. Primarily driven by the needs of the global automotive industry, this Ethernet standard is yet again another example of Ethernet’s versatility and expansion into new applications.

IEEE 802.3bw-2015 supports 100 megabit per second (Mb/s) Ethernet operation over a single, balanced, twisted pair cable in the connected car. It will not only influence functional vehicle design, but also support a new world of electronic design in vehicle electrification, in-vehicle applications, and real-time connectivity with the outside world.

Learn more about this Ethernet standard from Steve Carlson, chair, IEEE P802.3p™ 100BASE-T1 Gigabit Ethernet Task Force. In the following articles, Steve shares more about IEEE 802.3bw-2015, its applications, and the potential it brings to the connected car industry:

Ethernet has and continues to be the robust technology behind so much innovation. However, the role of this Ethernet standard for the connected car is just one piece in a much larger, exciting story – the connected person.

Interested in learning more about the role of Ethernet in the automotive industry? Please join us for the 2016 IEEE-SA Ethernet & IP @ Automotive Technology Day (E&IP@ATD) on 20-21 September 2016 in Paris France. E&IP@ATD is the premier event for manufacturers, suppliers, vendors, and tool providers to learn about Ethernet technologies and applications in the automotive environment.

A New, Unifying Specification Eases Sensor Integration Challenges

bio image joel hulouxBy Joel Huloux, a senior member of IEEE, chairman of the board of MIPI Alliance and director of lobbying and standardization in strategic planning for the microcontroller and digital ICs group at STMicroelectronics.

Integrating sensors into small devices has never been easy, but today it’s even more complex—and more important—than ever before. Thanks to the smartphone industry that popularized sensor applications, consumers and businesses benefit daily from the information sensors provide. Sensors in all types of mobile-connected devices are enabling markets in many vertical industries and fueling the burgeoning Internet of Things (IoT). Camera sensors are essential to autonomous vehicles, for example, and embedded biometric sensors are innovating new medical, health, and fitness products.

Because there are broad and diverse markets for sensor-based products, engineers need integration techniques that fulfill many use cases. To facilitate both design and operational efficiencies, engineers need interfaces that are easily implemented and can accommodate multiple sensors in a device with minimal design complexity.

Minimizing pin count is fundamental to an efficient solution because it allows more sensors in a device, simplifies designs and reduces component and implementation costs. But minimizing pin count requires reducing the number of interfaces between components. Designers have traditionally used I2C, SPI, UART, or GPIOs, depending on the sensors used, and the fragmentation of interfaces can increase pin counts when multiple sensors are required.

Interfaces used for sensors need not be complex, because the devices are typically based on mechanical and analog technologies. Yet the interfaces must operate with very little power and use power efficiently to support continuous data collection and transmission from multiple types of sensors—all without compromising battery life.

A unifying solution that solves these integration challenges and provides system-level benefits has recently been released by MIPI Alliance as a draft specification to its member companies. MIPI I3C was developed collaboratively with the broader sensor industry and consolidates the I2C, SPI, UART, and GPIO approaches into a single specification. MIPI I3C is comprehensive and compatible with each approach. The specification requires just two pins and consumes a fraction of the energy the legacy interfaces require. The unified approach can interface multiple sensors from different vendors to a controller or application processor to reduce costs and complexity.


MIPI I3C is also important because it represents what standards are all about: bringing an industry together to craft engineering solutions that reduce fragmentation, facilitate interoperability, and create design and production efficiencies to accelerate time to market while reducing costs. MIPI Alliance has specialized in this work since 2003, developing methods to interconnect a full range of components in the demanding mobile operating environment.

Given the industry need and the participation of the sensor community in this effort, we fully expect the new interface will play a fundamental role in the growth of sensor-based markets, including the IoT.

MIPI Alliance is a member program of the IEEE Industry Standards and Technology Organization (ISTO), an international federation of leading industry groups and consortia dedicated to the advancement of standardized technologies for the benefit of industry. Day-to-day operations support for ISTO and ISTO member programs is provided by IEEE Alliance Management Services.

IEEE Publishes 2017 National Electrical Safety Code®

Today the IEEE Standards Association released the 2017 National Electrical Safety Code® (NESC®). Every five years, NESC users come together to review and update the code, so that it stays a relevant and authoritative guide for ensuring the continued practical safeguarding of persons and utility facilities during the installation, operation, and maintenance of electric supply and communication facilities.

 The infographic below highlights some of the changes to the 2017 edition of the NESC.


The 2017 NESC also introduces new, helpful tools so that users can more easily access and utilize NESC content including the 2017 NESC Handbook, Premier Edition. Later this fall, IEEE will also be offering a series of new educational courses based on the NESC 2017 Edition, as well as introducing a mobile app for enhanced access to NESC content in the field. For more information please visit the NESC homepage.

Learn more about the NESC process and 2017 edition:

‘Innovation, Growth and Social Prosperity:’ IEEE at the OECD Ministerial Meeting

Consensus has gathered globally that collaboration among all stakeholders—across government, industry, international organizations, academia, civil society and others—will be crucial to spurring additional innovation, growth and social prosperity
in the digital economy around the world. IEEE has joined just such a diverse group in Cancún, Mexico, at the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Ministerial Meeting on the Digital Economy, to advance dialogue and progress.

The OECD Ministerial Meeting, which ends 23 June, is taking place in order to stimulate conversation in key interrelated areas:

  • maximizing the contribution of the digital economy to growth and wellbeing;
  • creating the right investment and policy frameworks to support innovation in digital technologies and boost their impact on social prosperity, and
  • attaining an environment of security, trust and resiliency for networks and users.

With the core purpose of fostering technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity, IEEE was eager to bring its voice to the OECD Ministerial Meeting through a number of opportunities.

New Markets and New Jobs

Konstantinos Karachalios, managing director, IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA), joins a panel discussion 23 June, “New Markets and New Jobs.”

The proliferation of machine automation is causing many to worry about their job security and the future of employment of their children and communities at large. This is just one of the legitimate concerns that compete with the advocacy on the positive
impacts of technologies, methodologies and systems that aim to reduce human intervention in our day-to-day lives. Mr. Karachalios will speak to the IEEE efforts underway to contribute to alleviating those concerns by helping ensure that technology
is advanced to the benefit of humanity under principled disciplines.

For example, the IEEE Global Initiative for Ethical Considerations in the Design of Autonomous Systems has been launched to address key issues facing
society regarding intelligent technologies. And the IEEE Internet Initiative facilitates a dialogue between the two historically disparate worlds of technology and policy. In this way, the IEEE Internet
Initiative informs debate and decisions, to help ensure trustworthy technology solutions and best practices and to successfully address the new technology policy challenges. Through activities such as these, IEEE is helping drive conversation across
the boundaries that traditionally separate diverse stakeholders, to help ensure that technology is advanced for the benefit of humanity.

In addition to Mr. Karachalios, eight other speakers were invited to join the “New Markets and New Jobs” panel discussion:

  • Alfonso Navarrete Prida, Minister of Labor and Social Welfare, Mexico;
  • Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen-Fleisch, Secrétaire d’Etat et Directrice du Secrétariat d’Etat à l’économie (SECO), Département fédéral de l’économie, de la formation et de la recherche (DEFR), Switzerland;
  • Arijandas Šliupas, Vice Minister, Ministry of Transport and Communications, Lithuania;
  • Nkosi, Sango Patekile Holomisa, Deputy Minister, Minister of Labour, South Africa;
  • Alan Davidson, Director of the Digital Economy, United States;
  • Damon Silvers, Director of Policy and Special Counsel, American Federation of Labour & Congress of Industrial Organizations;
  • Iain Mac Labhrainn (MacLaren), Director, Centre for Excellence in Learning & Teaching, and
  • Jody Greenstone Miller, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Business Talent Group.

The panel discussion will be moderated by Andrus Ansip, Vice President for the Digital Single Market for the European Commission. Bhairavi Desai, National Taxi Workers’ Alliance; Rob Atkinson, Founder and President, Information Technology and Innovation
Foundation (ITIF), and Bruno Lanvin, Executive Director, Global Indices, INSEAD, are scheduled to serve as “key interveners.”


EcoFenix was announced yesterday, 21 June, as the winner of a U.S. $1,000 cash prize for the IEEE-sponsored Excellence Award for “Best App That Addresses Value Ethical Design,” during the BIAC Connected Communities, Connected Lives Hackathon at the OECD Ministerial Meeting. Kevin Alejandro Ruiz, Luis Esteban Barranco, Noel Leyva Larios, Erik Velasco, Brenda Cristina Rico Marldonado and Fernando Garcia were members of the winning EcoFenix team.

The 24-hour competition encouraged application developers to showcase their coding talents and collaborate with peers and technical mentors from all over the world in developing innovative solutions to local or global challenges. In competition for
more than $20,000 in cash prizes and mentorship from a venture-capital firm, teams developed apps in a range of areas:

  • smart cities apps related to e-government, crisis management, environmental protection, sustainable development, urban transport solutions, energy and/or water conservation;
  • social inclusion apps related to access for traditionally marginalized groups such as the disabled, seniors, residents in rural areas and the under-skilled; digital skills development; e-government, or citizen engagement with the government;
  • entrepreneurship apps related to building business connectivity; increasing scope of small- and medium-size businesses; supporting digital entrepreneurship or transforming employer-employee or buyer-supplier relations, and
  • cultural heritage apps related to history, culture, tourism, geography or arts.

The EcoFenix team’s winning app focuses on connecting individuals in order to reuse electronic equipment that would otherwise be discarded. The app is intended to allow members of a community to utilize components of this equipment to build devices,
such as computers, tablets and mobile phones, which can be distributed to members of the community who cannot otherwise afford these devices. As devices are built using these components, members of the community can provide the instructions on how
the new devices were created that would allow others located anywhere in the world who utilize the app to follow the same approach in their own local community.

Open Standards for an Open IoT

Also yesterday, as part of the 21 June Internet Technical Advisory Committee (ITAC) Forum at the OECD Ministerial Meeting, IEEE hosted a panel discussion, “Open Standards for an Open Internet of Things (IoT).” Roberto Minerva, Research Coordinator
at Telecom Italia Lab, and Chair of the IEEE IoT Initiative, was joined in the discussion by four other panelists:

  • Elsa Chan, Co-founder of Jetlun;
  • David Conrad, Chief Technology Officer, ICANN;
  • Luis Kun, Professor of National Security at the Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies (CHDS) at the National Defense University;
  • Laurent Liscia, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director, OASIS, and
  • Monique Morrow, Chief Technical Officer and Evangelist for New Frontiers Development and Engineering, Cisco.

The session explored how stakeholders can develop a common core of open standards that includes architectural frameworks, reference models and data-abstraction blueprints, to enable a clear definition of relationships among the IoT’s numerous vertical
markets, while minimizing industry and vertical market fragmentation and improving interoperability. Panelists discussed how open standards will be critical to support key development areas—smarter power consumption, improved storage and management
of data, safeguards for privacy and security, high-performance micro-controllers, communications and interoperability, among them—that will serve as the foundational building blocks for the IoT.

Continuing the Conversations

IEEE is committed to continuing the conversations that have been stoked at this week’s OECD Ministerial Meeting. Please visit the IEEE Global Initiative for Ethical Considerations in the Design of Autonomous Systems,
Internet Initiative or IEEE IoT Initiative to engage.

Ethiopian Student Takes Top Prize for IEEE 802® Paper Submission

The IEEE 802® LAN/MAN Standards Committee (802 LMSC) and the IEEE Standards Education Committee (SEC) recently invited students from around the world to submit papers addressing the history, application, or future application of IEEE 802® standards. Papers were judged based on demonstrating three criteria:

  • A level of refinement that is of a publishable quality
  • Readability and clarity so that an audience untrained in the field of standardization can understand the key points being made
  • Sophistication and depth of research relating the original finding to the relevant scholarly literature

A panel of judges with representatives from the 802 LMSC and the SEC has awarded the top prize to Ethiopian student Meareg Abreha, who attends Addis Ababa University (AAU) in Ethiopia’s capital city. Abreha’s paper, entitled “History and Implementation of the IEEE 802 Security Architecture”, has earned the university student a US $1000 Cash Award, a US $500 Travel Stipend, and attendance and hotel accommodations for the IEEE 802 Plenary Meeting and Awards Ceremony in July 2016, where the student also has the opportunity to formally present the winning paper.

Pursuing a Master’s thesis that is related to IEEE 802.11 security protocol improvement, Abreha says “generally, the idea of a competition is very nice, as it motivates young researchers and students to keep the focus of their research matched to the current IEEE trends, and to eventually dig frontier research ideas in the field.”

Abreha was introduced to the competition after participating in a seminar hosted by Desalegne Mekuanint, a lecturer and researcher at AAU who was also named one of the first IEEE Standards Fellows under the IEEE and Internet Society (ISOC) Exchange Fellowship Pilot Programme.

“It’s rewarding to engage young students on the importance of standards in meeting technical, economic, environmental, and societal challenges, and the IEEE 802 standards family clearly demonstrates how standards can make a global impact in our lives today and for the future,” said James Gilb, second vice chair, IEEE 802 LMSC. “We congratulate Meareg for the hard work and thorough research that resulted in an informative and decidedly winning paper that met all the judging panel’s criteria.”

The paper contest sponsored by 802 LMSC and the SEC encourages students to learn about IEEE 802 standards and how they have become globally pervasive, driven by the ever-growing needs of data networks around the world. The success of IEEE 802 standards—from their inception through today—has been based upon their fair, open and transparent development process.

The SEC is a joint committee of the IEEE Standards Association Board of Governors and the IEEE Educational Activities Board.

IEEE Photo Tech Challenge

The IEEE Foundation and IEEE Standards Association are hosting the IEEE Photo Tech Challenge to encourage people to use their mobile devices to capture pictures of how technology impacts the world in three categories:

1. IEEE’s Greatest HITS (History, Innovation, Technology & Science)
2. Technology that Empowers Bright Minds
3. How Tech Helps Humanity

Participants can upload their photos to the Photo Tech Challenge page on the IEEE Foundation Facebook Page, where we already have a great collection of technology photos submitted. You can participate by submitting a photo or by voting for your favorites by giving them a “like”; the most “liked” images will be reviewed by an IEEE panel and top picks will be awarded a $100 Amazon Gift Card.

IEEE will be selecting top photos this summer.

Photos must be taken with a mobile device and fall under one of the three categories: IEEE’s Greatest HITS (History, Innovation, Technology & Science); Technology that Empowers Bright Minds; or How Tech Helps Humanity. Participants are to give a brief description of the photo, as well as share what inspired them to take the photo.

Need some inspiration? Check out the first round of top photos in each category from the IEEE Photo Challenge below. IEEE would like to congratulate Fahad Al Mamun, Maria Arun Kumar, and Hassan El Shenawy for sharing their photos that capture the global impact of technology.

Category: IEEE’s Greatest HITS (History, Innovation, Technology & Science)

Photo credit: Fahad Al Mamun

Category: Technology that Empowers Bright Minds

Photo credit: Maria Arun Kumar

Category: How Tech Helps Humanity

Photo credit: Hassan El Shenawy

Congratulations and thank you to all who have participated in the first round of the IEEE Photo Challenge.

Check out the Photo Tech Challenge page for inspiration and more information to submit your photos or vote for your favorites today!

The National Electrical Safety Code: Engaging the Next Generation of Engineers

Can you imagine a world without electricity? We have a lot of engineers to thank for the wonders of electricity, and we are looking to engage and support the next generation of engineers who will change and evolve our power and energy systems.

IEEE is committed to helping young engineers get involved, offering IEEE Power & Energy Society Scholarship Plus Initiative opportunities to students interested in pursuing a career in power and energy. It is this next generation of electrical engineers that will keep the lights on.

The opportunities are plentiful for electrical engineers and benefits include good wages, mentorship, advancement, and the prospect of providing environmentally responsible and safe services to the public, our economy, and the nation. There is a lot going on in the power industry and the time is ripe to get involved.

As electricity is deployed in new ways and in every reach throughout the world, there are serious risks that need to be tackled. One could say that, with great power comes great responsibility for safety. This is why electrical engineers come together and go through a rigorous review of the National Electrical Safety Code® (NESC®), to keep the code up-to-date and useful for the protection of the public, electrical professionals, equipment, and property. With a new edition released every five years, the NESC has a track record of over 100 years of addressing particular electrical safety concerns for persons during the installation, operation, or maintenance of electrical supply and communication lines.

The collaboration and wide participation of electrical engineers and others in the power and energy industry have been key to the success of the NESC in helping provide best practices for safety of electricity supply and communication utility systems to both public and private utilities for many generations. As a review cycle comes to an end with the 2017 Edition of NESC launching in August 2016, it is time to start thinking about what’s next. Again, we look to the rising of next generation electrical engineers to challenge, review, and write a code for the future.

As May is National Electrical Safety Month, it is an opportune time to raise awareness about electrical hazards because education is a great defense against these real safety hazards. However, there is also a need for more to participate in this effort. We hope to encourage more students to join this team of engineers that are not only powering the world, but also seeking to help keep it safe.

Happy National Electrical Safety Month!