TUG Racing - Automotive IMU Sensor Eval to Production PCB in a Day

TUG Racing - Automotive IMU Sensor Eval to Production PCB in a Day
“Our rapid development cycle was possible because of two devices: Saleae’s Logic 8  and semify’s SmartWave Control. They work together to make both parts of IC communication easy: generating known good signals with SmartWave, and observing the actual behavior with the Logic 8.”  - TUG Racing


TUG Racing, a student formula racing team at the University of Graz, embarked on an ambitious project to enhance vehicle performance by integrating a custom Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU). Their goal was to develop a custom, CAN-enabled IMU with programmable gyroscope filtering to improve performance on the track. Utilizing the Saleae Logic 8 Logic Analyzer, among other tools, they accelerated their development process, from conceptualization to a fully integrated PCB within a single day.


The project's success hinged on the team's ability to rapidly evaluate and integrate the ASM330LHHXG1 automotive IMU into their system. This required precise communication and data analysis capabilities to ensure accurate sensor performance and compatibility with vehicle systems.

Solution Overview

TUG Racing strategically employed the Saleae Logic Analyzer alongside the ST Microelectronics ASM330LHHXG1 IMU and the ST’s STEVAL-MKI243A adapter board. This combination of tools was pivotal in validating the sensor's capabilities and facilitating the design of a custom production grade printed circuit board (PCB).

Development Process

Rapid Prototyping and Evaluation (45 Min)

  • Initial Setup (30 min): Leveraging Semify’s SmartWave Control for I2C commands and the Saleae Logic Analyzer for monitoring, the team quickly established communication with the IMU, efficiently reading and adjusting settings.
  • Data Stream Optimization (15 min): The SmartWave's streaming capabilities, analyzed by Saleae’s Logic 2 software, allowed the team to optimize the sensor data acquisition rate.

Integration and Debugging (2 hours)

  • Microcontroller Implementation: Implementing the Infineon XMC4400-F64 microcontroller, the team used the Saleae Logic Analyzer to ensure that the microcontroller's commands matched the evaluation kit's outputs, identifying critical hardware insights such as the need for external pull-up resistors.

PCB Design and Finalization (5 hours)

  • PCB Layout: With insights gathered, the team designed a PCB incorporating necessary components like voltage converters and a common-mode choke for CAN lines. The Saleae Logic Analyzer played a crucial role in this phase, enabling real-time monitoring and adjustments.

For a comprehensive overview, visit TUGracing's sensor evaluation page.

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