InvenSense, a top-ranking solution vendor in the motion processor industry, has recently introduced the IMU-3000 range of inertial measurement units (IMUs).
The IMU-3000 features an embedded three-axis gyroscope along with the Digital Motion Processor (DMP) hardware accelerator engine that incorporates a secondary I2C port. This port interfaces to accelerometers from third parties for delivering a final six-axis sensor fusion output at the primary I2C port.
The IMU combines rotational motion and linear motion in one data stream for the particular application. This device is well suited for a broad range of consumer products that need a low-cost, sturdy motion processing solution. This solution has many applications like game controllers, fitness, medical, set top boxes, sports, remote controls in broadband enabled TVs. The IMU-3000 is able to offload the exhaustive motion processing computational needs from the host processor, thereby reducing the requirement for frequent polling of output from the motion sensor and facilitating the utilization of the low power, low-cost microcontrollers.
Motion command is emerging as a standard interface for the consumer electronics industry. Nitendo’s sales increased in 2009 due to this feature, accounting for 43% share in the number of video games consoles that were shipped during 2009. Such an increase in sales prompted Microsoft and Sony to launch motion sensing play systems in time for this year’s holiday season, according to California-based market research firm Suppli’s consumer electronics analyst, El Segundo.
The IMU-3000 incorporates a three-axis digital gyro that is programmable for full-scale ±250, ±500, ±1000, and ±2000 degrees/s ranges, which is ideal for precision tracking for slow as well as fast motions. The IMU’s 0.02 degrees/s per √Hz rate noise performance is the current industry standard, offering the best-quality user experience for gaming and pointing applications. There has been a reduction in the manufacturing-line calibration requirements due to factory-calibrated 1% initial sensitivity. The dedicated I2C-master accelerometer sensor bus and the on-chip FIFO have reduced system power consumption and simplified the system timing. The sensor bus enables the IMU to acquire data directly through the off-chip spectrometer. Intervention by an external processor is not needed for such a data acquisition. A miniature plastic QFN package with 4x4x0.9 mm size, a precision clock having 2% accuracy over –40 to 85°C, programmable digital filters, an embedded temperature sensor, programmable interrupts, on-chip16-bit ADCs, and a 13 mW low power consumption are some of the industry-leading features of the IMU.
The volume-proven and patented and Nasiri-Fabrication platform of the company is the main enabling technology for the high performance and size of the IMU. The IMU integrates the CMOS electronics and the MEMS mechanical structure directly at the level of the wafer, resulting in the small packet size, low power consumption, and the low noise specification in the industry. The IMU is designed for supporting the consumer market’s high-volume requirements. It has leveraged its Taiwan-based in-house calibration and high-volume test facilities along with the 8 inch fabrication platform.
iSuppli’s principal analyst for MEMS and sensors, Jeremie Bouchaud, explained that the combination of a three-axis gyroscope and a three-axis accelerometer is able to offer more complete and more precise user motion recognition as compared to using the accelerometer only. He added that the signals from these two sensors can be fused easily.