Integrated Circuits for Mobile Reader and Communicator for ISO-Standard Smart-Cards


MORECO - 5051

Keywords infrared communication systems, smart cards


Start Date: 15-FEB-90 / Duration: 30 months

[ contact / participants ]


Objectives and Approach

The objective of this project was to specify, design and test the multifunction integrated circuits necessary to manufacture a low-cost smart-card-based identification system, consisting of a mobile, portable pocket-sized smart-card reader and a fixed terminal control unit. MORECO runs in combination with the MORESYS (5470) project in the ABHS-P area.

The operating range is in the order of 0.5 to 3 metres, allowing communication whilst the person wearing the reader is moving towards the fixed terminal unit. This mobile data communication link uses a modulated, bidirectional infrared beam.

Progress and Results

Two integrated circuits have been designed: a sensitive infrared receiver (SIRR) in bipolar technology, and a wake-up power supply (WUPS) in low voltage, low power CMOS technology. The SIRR-IC provides a single-component receiver, incorporating amplification, filter and gain-control functions, coupled to an infrared detector. The WUPS-IC provides battery power management (the reader will be activated upon reception of an infrared pulse transmitted by the terminal).

Prototypes of reader and terminal, in the form of a low power consuming smart-card size electronic badge and automatic control unit for hands-free access control, have been fabricated and tested in view of the possibility of their use for accreditation and access control in ski-lift applications. A real-life test carried out at Les Menuires during the last Winter Olympics successfully demonstrated the overall feasibility of the concept, the system's integration, the functionality of the software, and the infrared protocol under different environmental conditions. Besides identification, many other large-volume applications for such mobile smart-card readers are foreseen, such as in motorway toll payment, public transport, etc.

In addition to the above, a feasibility study has demonstrated that the infrared sensor diode and the SIRR-IC can be mounted in the same infrared-transparent plastic package with a lens on top.

However, to integrate the photodiodes on the same silicon as the circuits, or to integrate the bipolar and low voltage ICs on the same silicon would require major technology changes not economically affordable for this type of applications.

Exploitation

The system has already started first commercial exploitation at several ski resorts, in public buildings, and in various other security applications.

The project is also setting standards for mobile infrared communications.


CONTACT POINT

Mr P Servettaz
SINOR 6 SA
Chemin du Vieux Chêne, 30
F - 38240 Meylan
tel: + 33/ 76-41-2526
fax: + 33/ 76-41-9585
telex: 389000 SINORG

Participants

SINORG - F - C
BULL SA - F - P
PHILIPS COMPOSANTS - F - P
TELESINCRO - E - P
ELGELEC - F - A
PENBURG SA - E - A


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MORECO - 5051, December 1993


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html version of synopsis by Nick Cook