The Grand Opening of BTC Embedded Systems Inc in November 2019 in the historic Scarab Club of Detroit was a big success with participants from major OEMS, suppliers and tool vendors.
Did you miss it? Don’t worry, in this blog article we summarize the two keynote talks from MAN Truck&Bus and Ford Motor Company for you.
Truck 4.0 – The digital challenge of a truck OEM – autonomous driving
Stefan Teuchert - Senior Vice President, Electric/Electronic Systems Vehicle Functions MAN Truck & Bus AG, Munich/Germany
In the opening keynote, Mr. Teuchert described how MAN is addressing the challenges coming from trends the whole industry is experiencing – from digitalization to autonomous driving.
He started by lining out why a truck is a very different product compared to a consumer car. One major difference is the lifetime, which is up to 30.000 hours of driving and 1.5 million kilometers. As a pure B2B product a truck is an investment good and the customer expectations focus on topics such as reliability, availability or TCO (total cost of ownership). As around 60% of the TCO comes from fuel and costs for the driver, innovations around fuel consumption and autonomous driving can represent a dramatic business advantage. One example is the MAN EfficientCruise® feature, which intelligently optimizes acceleration and braking based on the topography of the road. Future innovations on which MAN is currently working on include alternative powertrains and automated driving for different environments such as terminal, highway and construction sites.
In the second part of the presentation, Mr. Teuchert presented the current E/E architecture at MAN and the related development process. Regarding the hardware architecture, MAN is moving away from large ECU network of many domain specific controllers towards one centralized controller. Advantages are an easier function integration, lower network load and cost optimization. For the development process, MAN relies on a central common engineering data base which manages all artifacts including requirements, functions, signals, parameters or tests. The user interface to access this database is a customer specific development from BTC Embedded Systems. For the software development and validation, MAN relies on dSPACE TargetLink and BTC EmbeddedTester
Standardized Model-Based Design/Software Development Process
Kim Murphy - Model Based Design Technical Specialist, Global MBD Core Process, Tools, & Methods
Ayman Ismail - Supervisor Software Verification Process,Central Software, E/E Systems Engineering
Ford Motor Company, Dearborn/USA
Kim Murphy and Ayman Ismail from Ford Motor Company presented their motivation and strategy to achieve a globally standardized Model-based Design and software development process and toolchain. One of the goals is the efficiency opportunity from re-use and license optimization. It also allows them to share best practices between projects allowing the engineers to focus on control design rather than the tooling.
In a first phase, a focused team defines the process and the requirements in close collaboration with end users from different departments (e.g. powertrain, chassis, electrical). This helps to take each team’s domain specific requirements into account from the beginning. Concurrently, the teams also strive for compliance with relevant standards like MISRA and ISO 26262. During the “design phase,” the process gets actually implemented by creating guideline documents, tool awareness and training material. In the third phase, the process is deployed into the actual production teams. This involves in-house trainings for all users. The internal trainers are typically qualified with an extensive “Train-the-Trainer” program from each tool vendor. While the development projects are running, the subject matter expert team provides internal support, providing continuous improvements based on user feedback. This team also manages the communication with the tool vendor, to submit feedback such as feature requests, as one example. Collaboration tools are in place to facilitate the interactions with the vendor.
This standardized process covers many aspects including modeling guidelines, software architecture, code generation, static analysis and continuous integration. As part of this project, Ford Motor Company and BTC Embedded Systems have been working together to design and deploy a process for unit tests on model and code level as well as automated back-to-back tests.