New Eagle News | Winter 2019

As we enjoy the holiday season and the beginning of a new year, we’re thrilled to announce a variety of innovative solutions and improvements designed to help you navigate your path to market with more efficiency than ever. From all-new drive-by-wire kits to a variety of additions to the Raptor hardware line,  keep reading to learn what’s new this winter!

 New Eagle’s Drive-By-Wire Lineup Continues to Expand

New Eagle’s Autonomous Development Platform continues its expansion with the addition of three new drive-by-wire kits to the lineup of offerings. Built on ruggedized, certifiable hardware like automotive-grade OEM controllers, these kits not only deliver high levels of reliability for safety-critical applications, but easy scalability for seamless fleet deployment. Learn more about our autonomous solutions, or schedule a demo today!

New Additions to the Raptor Hardware Line

From platform solutions for controlling actuators, data collection and management, display to an on-board or remote operators, to a variety of ECUs and displays that range in pin count, input, output, memory, and processor configuration, Raptor’s growing suite of automotive-grade products are making it easier than ever to get to production. Our relationships with OEM suppliers allow us to serve as a one-stop-shop for getting the best parts for your system. Explore some of our new and featured products below! new raptor hardware

VeeCAN 500 

This five-inch, high-resolution color display wrapped in a rugged, environmentally-sealed enclosure,  delivering high-performance graphics and video capabilities. Features 2 CAN channels, one ethernet, and one video input. Able to act as a low-cost, all-in-one display and controller solution.

VeeCAN 128 

Electrically and environmentally rugged, ideal for delivering tough, flexible instrumentation in harsh environments. Features a high-resolution LCD Display, allowing it to act as a reader and/or data logger for monitoring your system’s parameters. Includes 9 inputs, 4 outputs, and 2 CAN 2.0B communication channels.

GCM 112

With its 5 CAN buses, 3 LIN Masters, 2 ethernet channels, and variety of configurable discrete inputs and outputs, this powerful GCM is ideal for autonomous drive-by-wire, electric-hybrid, and intelligent machine control applications. Its CPU is a high-performance, multi-core architecture with a companion safety power system basis chip able to support the highest level of functional safety (ASIL-D). Contact  [email protected] to pre-order. 

GCM 48

This rugged, low-cost controller module features 6 CAN buses, 3 LIN Masters with 1 LIN bus capable of LIN Slave programming, and configurable discrete inputs and outputs. Contact [email protected] to pre-order. 

Bosch Electronic Throttle Body Controller

Designed to control the fresh air of spark-ignition engines in combination with an electronic throttle control system, this controller is ideal for flex-fuel ETB applications. CNG and LPG are permissible if injected in the airflow after the throttle body. 

Continental/Vitesco Fuel Injectors

With its ability to function at high fuel pressures, these injectors are ideal for enhancing engine performance and running quality through an optimized spray pattern. Available in a variety of multi-orifice tips for improved mixture preparation and atomization with lower BSFC and better idle quality than many other injectors. 

Mitsubishi AC Compressor

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Automotive Thermal Systems group (MCC) offers the EWH40Dx AC Compressor to compress low temperature/pressure gaseous refrigerant to a higher temperature/pressure state and circulate it through the refrigerant subsystem. This refrigerant subsystem can aid with passenger cabin comfort cooling or for cooling of energy storage components within the drivetrain. Designed for ~400v systems.

Mitsubishi PTC Heater

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Automotive Thermal Systems group (MCC) offers the EWH40Dx heater is off-the-shelf no additional customer funded tooling is required, with engineering design and development (ED&D) available free of charge. The high-quality  EWH40Dx heater is reliable, trusted by vehicles have been sold all around tyhe world. Designed for ~400v systems.

High Current H-Bridge

This solid-state DC load reversing contactor is wired in an H-Bridge configuration, rated for up to 30A at 24VDC. The H-Bridge provides an efficient way to reverse polarity on a variety of DC loads, including solenoids, motors, brake/clutch assemblies, etc.

Pedal Emulators

New Eagle’s PWM to Analog Converter converts three separate channels of PWM signals to proportional 0-5V analog signals, which is especially useful when paired with control modules with PWM outputs, but no 0-5V analog outputs. 

Need Support?

It’s easier to protect your investment and get the most out of powerful software tools like Raptor with New Eagle’s engineering support and software maintenance plans. With qualified developers and engineers available to help you get the most out of these powerful tools, along with access to the latest updates and bug fixes, you’ll benefit from fewer delays and a more efficient project timeline.

To learn more about support offerings available, visit our support resources page or add dollars to your existing support fund on our webstore.

Get Trained on Raptor

Build or sharpen your Raptor skills by registering for ou three-day, hands-on Raptor Training program. In this embedded model-based development (eMBD) course, you’ll learn the basics of using the Raptor platform in a MATLAB® and Simulink® environment to create real-world applications. 

Register for the next available course at our Ann Arbor, Michigan headquarters before space runs out! 

New Eagle is Your One-Stop, Production Shop For OEM Hardware

OEM hardware

Establishing trusted relationships with major original equipment manufacturers (OEM) can be an overwhelming task for those looking to acquire parts for smaller, lower volume projects. Even when these relationships begin, collecting the integration information necessary to develop a system is tedious and can significantly slow down a project’s timeline. If you’re developing low volume projects, the inability to establish these types of relationships is frustrating.

This is where New Eagle can help you. Our well-established relationships with major OEMs can supply you with the production hardware and integration details you need to develop your project. Whether it’s a low budget concept project or high-volume production program, get access to what you need starting on day one of your development project. If you’re still thinking about cultivating your own relationships with automotive suppliers, learn about the necessary steps you’ll need to take.

Developing Relationships with OEMs

Major suppliers strive to deal with Tier 1 or high-volume production programs since they guarantee high rewards. These companies are designed to handle continued, high-volume programs, like fleet management or high-level commercial vehicle distribution. If you’re able to support a consistent supply of components from these manufacturers then great! If you can’t, then they won’t have the time or resources to develop a relationship with you.

Once you do get the conversation going, the legal steps you must take to get the relationship off the ground can be costly and time consuming. Why? Because these relationships require more than your average Non-Disclosure Agreements, which, in and of themselves, are already extensive for these suppliers.

Multiple Production Parts from a Variety of Manufacturers

After establishing the legalities, the next step is to research all the available parts and figure out which ones will work best with your system. However, your complex system has multiple parts. How are you going to ensure that every part of the system can communicate with one another? You must go to each vendor and gather all the detailed product and software integration information for each part.

Consider how difficult this could be when procuring products from multiple different vendors. Especially since not many standard distributors supply this necessary documentation.

Work with a Trusted OEM Distributor

New Eagle PartnersThere is another option to cultivating your own relationships with automotive suppliers. Work with an establishment who already has those relationships in place. Here’s where New Eagle can help you. Over the years, we’ve cultivated relationships with a variety of OEMs, doing our due diligence to promote trusting relationships that benefit you. With this trust in place, we receive a consistent supply of components from these manufacturers for distribution and integration. This allows us to support both fast-paced, low budget concept projects as well as high-volume production programs.

As a trusted distributor, we have years of experience working with lower volume projects as these OEMs will often send us referrals. We act as the liaison between suppliers, such as John Deere and BorgWarner, and non-Tier 1 companies such as yourself. As another benefit, certain vendors, like Mitsubishi, only supply their products to our distribution team.

New Eagle is Your One-Stop, Production Shop

new eagle datasheetsWhen purchasing through New Eagle, all relevant information will be right at your fingertips. We have taken the time to not only navigate these supplier relationships for you, but to also gather all product information for external distribution. With an NDA in place, access all of our product’s data sheets, CAD files, .dbc files, etc. on our Product Wiki or Product Guide regardless of the original manufacturer. If we don’t have the information, we can leverage our relationships with these OEMs to get it for you.

Are you not certain which hardware you’ll need? We have you covered with our experienced sales and engineering teams. They can work with you to figure out which components will integrate best with your system. By working with us as your one-stop, production shop, we can also provide you with

  • Insight during your project’s earliest stages.
  • Strategy in mass production.
  • A supply of high-volume, production components.

Now, do you still want to cultivate your own relationships with Tier 1 automotive suppliers? Or, would you rather save time and money with New Eagle’s one-stop, production shop? We can offer you the same ruggedized, off-the-shelf hardware tailored to suit a variety of applications. Should you need additional assistance in getting to production, we offer consultation services and a software tool platform called Raptor™. Email [email protected] to start this conversation with us. We’re here to assist you.

 

3 Points of Friction That Slow Vehicle System Development

Laptop on top of automotive engine

Laptop on top of automotive engine

If the end game of control system development is to get your system or vehicle into production, you need to be as efficient as possible at each stage of the development life-cycle. It can be really frustrating, and costly, to get underway with a project and run into roadblocks that could have been avoided with the right tools. We’ve identified three mistakes that can create friction and ultimately slow your project to a halt.

1. Not Thinking About Hardware First

We have a saying around here: Hardware selection drives tool selection. Kevin Alley, Director of Programs at New Eagle explains:

“One of the challenges control engineers face is that when they’re in prototype development they don’t know what kind of controller hardware they’re going to need. If they choose a software platform at the front of their project that doesn’t have the right I/O for what is needed later…they’ll have to start over. That’s going to cost time and money.”

Ideally, engineers should select controller hardware first, and with this in mind: controllers are more than just a piece of hardware. As vehicles and the software that controls them becomes increasingly more complex, the software itself becomes a significantly larger part of the value-added to the vehicle.

Selecting ruggedized, high-quality hardware that supports your ideal software is now a critical choice that needs to move higher upstream in the development process. Your hardware selection impacts your schedule and your budget. But if so much of your vehicle’s value is reliant on its software, you better have the right ECU to support it.

How New Eagle Can Help:

Unless you’re working for the big guys with an ‘unlimited’ budget, it probably makes more sense to use an off-the-shelf controller with an accessible, highly flexible, and open development environment such as Raptor™. You could select one of our many ECU models available at volume pricing, and use it directly with our Raptor development toolset.

If you have an existing ECU you’d like to use, we can port Raptor into it, then you can use it to develop, test and control your vehicle, without friction. Better yet, you can start development today with one of our off-the-shelf ECUs and then easily port your Simulink model when YOUR controller comes online.

And, if you need a custom ECU, we can build you one to match your requirements, leveraging our existing relationships with high-volume automotive-grade ECU suppliers.

Download the Raptor eBook
2. Using the Wrong Development Tools

Engineers love rapid prototyping tools because they’re fast and familiar. Many of them may even have learned the rapid prototyping development environment in school, and want to stay in their comfort zone. We get it and support it.

The key is to understand that most rapid prototyping tools are just that, useful for prototyping only. That’s where they leave you. They are too expensive and don’t have the facilities needed for production. And if you use a rapid prototyping tool that can’t get you to production, or one that you can’t afford –another point of friction is created. We would like to suggest that some rapid prototyping tools can take you to production.

Kevin explains:

“That’s really the core of why New Eagle was founded. We wanted to offer controls engineers the same development style that they were used to, but with the added benefit of being able to take it all the way to production. The challenge was making high-quality controllers for them to run on that were affordable, and we have done that with our volume pricing.”

How New Eagle Can Help:

We created Raptor-Dev so that engineers could quickly create custom software in a highly effective development environment, one that is already familiar to many.

Raptor-Dev is an open ECU development environment that lets you quickly develop in the Simulink environment and run on production embedded hardware without the friction common to embedded system development.

3. Using a Disparate Set of Tools

This arguably creates the highest volume of headaches. Mismatched tools mean manual adaptations that eat up your time, create more friction, and introduce another source of costly errors. Imagine running into roadblocks that require hand-writing new code at each of these stages:

  • Design
  • Development
  • Calibration
  • Validation
  • Testing
  • Service

Here’s Kevin:

“What if, at any stage of development, you ran into a problem, and you could quickly change code in minutes vs. taking a week or more to get a new version from your vendor? How about changing the function of the code in seconds using a streamlined calibration interface vs. rebuilding everything. These quick-cycle iteration capabilities over many iterations will really add up – saving you time and cost.”

How New Eagle Can Help:

The Raptor Platform™ is an end-to-end solution that allows you to work within a holistic development system that takes you through to production, quickly. Engineers can design, develop, calibrate, validate, manage and service their vehicles all within a compatible suite of tools.

Kevin explains the not-as-obvious value of the Raptor tool-chain:

“We’ve heard from our customers that one of the things they really appreciate is the fact that they can keep their IP in-house because Raptor eliminates the need to constantly submit requests for software changes to an outside vendor – instead they can just do it on their own. When we say ‘Take Control’ here at New Eagle, that’s what we’re talking about. Helping engineers take control of their project from start to finish.”

If you’re interested in getting started with Raptor, consider our Raptor Starter Kit. It includes Raptor-Dev, Raptor-Cal & Raptor-CAN.

You can also read more about each of the tools in the tool-chain in our eBook about the Raptor Platform.

Download the Raptor eBook

Raptor Power User Tip: Implementing LIN Bus Master Using Raptor-Dev


Local Interconnect Network (LIN) provides a low-cost communication network alternative to CAN where lower bandwidth and less versatility are acceptable. LIN is a serial communication protocol that efficiently supports the control of mechatronic nodes in distributed applications. LIN uses a master/slave bus access concept with one master per bus.

LIN is a message-based protocol with message identifiers and message content similar to CAN. Also similar to CAN, the LIN standard does not specify the content or meaning of the messages which are to be transmitted within a LIN network, which are application specific and up to the application developer. The LIN standard introduces the LIN description file (*.LDF file) which is used to describe the LIN network. This file is analogous to a the *.DBC file used in CAN networks.

definitions

In a similar way to how Raptor-Dev automatically handles the details of CAN message packing and unpacking for you based on the DBC file using code-generation, the details for LIN messages are handled with Raptor-Dev for you using the LDF file. This user tip shows you how to configure a simple LIN master that communicates with two LIN slave nodes. The sample model is available for download.

Below you will see the model, starting at the top-level (with the model shown above). First, you must define the LIN bus using the “LIN Definition” block. This configures the LIN hardware driver for a particular channel, providing the baud rate and time base. This block also configures the software driver based on the LDF file you specify.

Next looking inside the ‘Foreground’ block, the architecture of the LIN network is more apparent:

LIN Master

The master (GCM80) will operate according to the schedule(s) defined in the LDF file–if one is present in the LDF. If there is no schedule present in the LDF, Raptor-Dev will automatically create a simple round-robin schedule for you based on the messages used in your model. In this example, there is only one schedule defined in the example LDF file, so there is one schedule available in the “LIN Set Schedule” block. You can define multiple schedules from which to choose. Schedule 0 will be “Empty,” meaning no schedule is selected, thus no messages will be sent on the bus.

LIN Set Schedule

Referencing the LDF with a text editor, shown here, you can see how the schedule is composed.

schedule tables

In the example model, using the“LIN_SCHED” variable as an adjustment block in Raptor-Dev, you are able to change the value to select a different schedule in Raptor-Cal. This will cause the bus traffic on the LIN network to change.

It is helpful to be able to read the state of the current schedule, which can be done with the “LIN Get Schedule” block:

LIN Get Schedule

As with CAN, errors may occur with the message transmission in LIN. The “LIN State” block allows monitoring of the LIN bus:

LIN state

Now, having configured the master, it is important to recall the way in which slaves operate on a LIN bus. The master will tell the slaves what to do, and when to do it according to the schedule.

LIN Master 2

In this example, the master sends data to a slave with the “LIN Tx Message” block, and data sent from a slave to the master is received with the “LIN Rx Message” block. These blocks handle all the packing and unpacking for you automatically based on the LDF file identified in the LIN Definition block.

LIN Tx Message

LIN Rx Message

Within these subsystems for sending and receiving LIN messages, a LIN Trigger block can be used to do extra logic based on the transmission or reception of a message. For receiving messages, the trigger will fire AFTER the message arrives and the receive block output data ports will contain the newly arrived data. For transmitting messages, the trigger will fire BEFORE the message is sent to the bus, the data in the outgoing messages will be collected from the transmit block if the block is inside the trigger callback.

In this example, a counter is incremented every time a particular frame is sent, and another counter is incremented every time a particular frame is received:

LIN Trigger

Triggers can be particularly helpful for creating internal logic for handling LIN frame events, and also to assure that you are processing or transmitting the latest data.

This user tip has shown how LIN is supported within Raptor-Dev. Hopefully, it will feel very familiar since LIN is exposed in the tool in a very similar way to CAN.

Download the Raptor eBook

ECUs: More Than Just A Piece of Hardware

Raptor_ECU

Raptor_ECUChoosing an Electronic Control Unit (ECU) for your EV / HEV / Autonomous vehicle is a huge decision with implications way beyond vehicle control. While some people see it as ‘just a piece of hardware’, we believe your ECU choice greatly impacts your development process and ultimately what you’ll be able to deliver, and when. The supervisory or vehicle control unit you choose will affect your costs and even your to time to market in ways you may not anticipate.

Continue reading “ECUs: More Than Just A Piece of Hardware”

Understanding The Raptor Application Monitor Tool

raptor application monitor tool

The Application Monitor is a tool within Raptor-Dev that adds continuous run-time checking within your running application. It’s a useful tool for Embedded Model-Based Design (eMBD), especially if you begin to push the limits of the embedded hardware. Debugging software created in Simulink with Raptor is a little different than debugging a text-based programming language (like Python, C/C++, or MATLAB). For one, the generated code created from a Simulink model with Raptor generally won’t be familiar to the author of the model, which is kind of the point. It is the power of code generation that lets you go fast not having to worry about the detailed code. Secondly, the built software is programmed onto a sealed electronic control unit (ECU) with no hardware debugging attachments. Thankfully, with a robust, validated tool like Raptor-Dev and the proven code-generation technology from The Mathworks, the kinds of issues that require a hardware debugger are resolved already and available in the proven software blocks for your use.

Debugging an application without these debugging tools could be as simple as toggling an output on the ECU or changing the state of the system to something you would expect; however, some errors are more difficult to track down such as those in memory management which can cause intermittent microcontroller resets and other non-deterministic behavior. The App Monitor comes in handy when the system can’t be debugged by traditional debugging methods.

bricked_moduleNo controls system engineer wants to tote around a bricked module. Using the App Monitor offers a way to determine what might be resetting the processor by pausing the application during runtime. By stopping the application before a reset, the state of the module is available to be seen by the user. When the application is stopped, user-accessible variables are available for viewing.

 

Download the Raptor eBook
How Do I Use The Application Monitor?

By creating a model and simply dropping the “App Monitor” block onto the top-level system, we’ve done most of the heavy lifting.

monitor-application-toolThe parameters are as follows:

block-parameters-raptor-app-monitor

  • Enable App Monitor: The benefit of being able to control this is to easily remove debugging features in a production code build, after testing, such as with a script.
  • Startup Action:
    • App Monitor Disabled: Causes the App Monitor to be disabled (can also be set through calibration – see next parameter).
    • Run: Runs the software on startup
    • Pause: Pauses the software on startup
  • Add Startup Action Adjustment: This adds a calibration in Raptor-Cal under “Startup” that can be configured:
    • When set to pause, the application will pause on startup, as seen here. The foreground counter is at 0. The idle time is 0% because the application has never entered the foreground loop that updates this variable. Otherwise it would be at 100%.

AppMonitor-State-Startup-Application

  • Minimum Idle Time: The minimum percent of time that the processor can be idle before the App Monitor pauses the application.
  • Maximum Thread Time: The maximum percent of time that any particular thread may be active before the App Monitor pauses the application when checked against the Percent Overrun Limit.
  • Percent Overrun Limit: The percent of time a thread may be above the maximum thread time.

Within our model, we’re able to add more App Monitor logic that can give insight into CPU usage. The blocks shown below allow accessing App Monitor information at runtime. We’ll start by adding a few blocks. Stop the application by toggling “App Monitor Stop”. This kind of control is powerful if you can generate logic to stop the application when you prefer (for instance, by setting this stop point within a particular function call). This tag is viewable in Raptor-Cal.

adjustment-app-monitor-stopWhile stopping the application can help, the ability to see the underlying system parameters is more helpful. You can access this information by using the “App Monitor Measurement” block.

adjustment-app-monitor-stopVarious measurements include:

  • Idle Time: The measured percent of time that the processor is idle.
  • Trigger Usage: The percent of the scheduled time rate that the last execution of this rate task consumed. In this example, we have selected the “Foreground”. On all modules, the foreground trigger is fired every 5ms by default — except for the BCM48 and display, where the foreground rate default is 10ms.
  • Trigger Period: The measured amount of time since the last firing of a trigger.
  • Platform Items: On certain ECUs there are additional application monitoring data that is exposed by the base software. These platform-specific items are in this area.
  • Percent Overrun: The measured percent of time that a thread has overrun its time schedule.
  • Trigger Longest Run: The longest task execution time, measured in milliseconds.
  • Number of Overruns: A count of the number of times that a thread has exceeded the amount of time it’s allowed to run.

Adding these measurements to the model provides a simple application to show the inner-workings of the application, which is available for download.

For this demonstration, you can configure the App Monitor calibrations in Raptor-Cal to see how it works. In this screenshot, notice the main application counter is significantly lower than the AppMonitorExecutionCount (App Monitor execution counter) when the AppMonitorState is set to “Paused” (pausing the application).

app-monitor-execution-count

What To Take Away?

The Application Monitor allows for application debugging in settings where conventional debugging methods can’t help you. By stopping an app and/or seeing thread usage within the app, you can take better steps toward getting your application up and running.

Download the Raptor eBook

August 2019 Raptor News

august raptor news 2019

Raptor Logo

If you’re a Raptor user with software maintenance, make sure to get the newly released update, Raptor 2019a2_2.0.  This version features key improvements, including:

  • GCM80: LIN Master Implementation, CAN queuing and XCP connection stability improvements
  • GCM70: Programming configurability improvements
  • GCM196: Output49, INPUT 31/32 updates
  • BCM48: CAN Transmit improvements
  • Displays: Initialization robustness enhancements, touchscreen button robustness improvements, display blocks interface fixes
  • J1939: added newly defined PGNs from standard
  • DBC-based CAN Message and Packing blocks bug fixes
  • Fault Manager feature additions and enhancements
  • Datasheet expansions and updates

Review the full release notes on our wiki, or download the Raptor-Test regression reports here. 

 

 

Raptor 2019a Webinar on August 23

Tune in at 2 p.m. EST on August 23, 2019 for our in-depth webinar on Raptor 2019a. Not only will you learn all about the latest Raptor update,  but you’ll also get a peek into what’s coming next to the Raptor Platform this year. 

raptor laptop

 

 


Introducing the VeeCAN 500

This dash-mountable, low-profile, 5-inch color display is the latest addition to the Raptor product line. Wrapped in a rugged, environmentally-sealed enclosure, it delivers a sleek, modern look while remaining easily programmable in the MATLAB/Simulink environment using Raptor-Dev. Get the specs on our wiki, or contact our sales team for information about how to purchase. 

veecan500 display

 

 


Raptor Training Sept 17

Get hands-on experience with Raptor during our three-day training course in Ann Arbor, Michigan on September 17-19, 2019. During this program, you’ll learn how to create real-world applications with Simulink and Raptor as you create models, build and program an ECU, and calibrate in real time with Raptor-Cal. 

raptor training

 

 

Get Hands-On Raptor Training In September

Raptor training cover image september

Join us for our popular Raptor Training program where participants will receive hands-on training with our embedded model-based controls, Raptor platform. Participants will come out of this three-day course with hands-on experience with the Raptor-Dev and Raptor-Cal tools.

 

raptor training

Tuesday, September 1 7  – Thursday, September 19, 2019

Defense Corridor Center for Collaboration and Synergy

7205 Sterling Ponds Court

Sterling Heights, Michigan 48312

 

 

If you can’t attend the September training session, reach out to our sales team to inquire about additional options customized to your needs. Also, be sure to subscribe to New Eagle’s Raptor newsletter to stay informed about Raptor toolkit’s tips and tricks, updates and future classes.  

What to Expect in Raptor Training

 

raptor training agenda

 

Attendees will use a throttle body controller project as an introductory guide to Raptor-Dev in the MATLAB/Simulink library. This will allow them to create a model intended for a target piece of hardware. Then, participants will use Raptor-CAL to flash the compiled software onto the hardware and make live calibratable adjustments on the flashed ECU.

On-Site, Customized Raptor Training Options

Can’t make it or prefer a more personalized training of New Eagle’s embedded model-based development tools? Our Raptor experts can travel to your team’s work facility for hands-on instruction catered to your needs.  

To learn more about these options and schedule a training at your location, email us at [email protected].  

We look forward to seeing you in class!

3 Myths About Rapid Prototyping Tools For Controls Development

model-based-development-workflow

Rapid prototyping tools allow quick iterations of control software code so we can learn what works and get the system functioning. Unfortunately, most rapid prototyping tools available today for system development fall into two categories:

  • The very expensive, highly capable options available to OEMs
  • The cheaper options meant for tinkering or hobbyists

Fortunately, there’s a third category: affordable, production-ready rapid prototyping tools that are easy-to-use.

Let’s look at three myths about rapid prototyping tools for the development and production of autonomous or EV/HEV vehicles.

Myth 1: Rapid Prototyping Tools Can’t Make Production Software

We’ve heard that rapid prototyping tools are great for innovation, but don’t have the capability to handle the detailed challenges and rigor of production system development.

Truth:

Rapid prototyping tools ARE great for innovation, because they let you iterate quickly, additionally, we’ve been enabling our customers to use those SAME tools for production for more than 15 years. New Eagle’s Raptor suite of tools is specifically designed for engineers developing systems and vehicles meant for mass production. Each Raptor software build automatically injects production-capable calibration management and data-collection capabilities to support production-oriented workflows and tools. Beyond that, Raptor has field-proven Fault Management & Diagnostics functionality engineered to allow application development targeting real-world emissions compliance standards such as CARB CCR 1968.2 (OBD-II) and CCR 1971.1 (OBD-HD).

Raptor Platform Overview

Myth 2: Rapid Prototyping Tools Can’t Handle Production Development Processes

We’ve heard engineers are more comfortable using legacy processes to achieve compliance with safety standards, because they are not sure how newer technologies map onto standards such as ISO 26262.

Truth:

Since its inception, ISO 26262 has provided a path to compliance using Model-Based development, providing ISO 26262-6 Annex B with guidelines. The revised ISO 26262 : 2018, which was recently released, provides enhanced guidance specifically for model-based development with code-generation and software safety analysis.

Raptor is built upon the MathWorks code generator for which MathWorks offers an IEC Certification Kit specifically for ISO 26262. Our production customers can engage our safety-certified engineers to prepare a plan tailored for their project.

 

model-based-development-workflow
Portions of this image are from the International Standard ISO 26262-6 Second Edition 2018-12

Download the Raptor eBook
Myth 3: Automated Code Means Added Hardware Costs

Some engineers believe that rapid prototyping and code-generation are too inefficient to target cost optimized controllers for volume production. They think it will increase their overhead which would force a more expensive processor and more memory. They believe you must hand-tweak software code and use the cheapest possible controller.

Truth:

Machine-generated code does not add costs, and is more accurate than human-generated code. The repeatability of machine-generated code, combined with the optimizations it can perform, is often favorable to its human-generated counterpart.

Raptor is built on The MathWorks proven code-generation technology which has continued to improve in quality and efficiency over the past fifteen years and provides a cost-effective way to accelerate your vehicle development.

Most systems development projects we consult on (low to medium volume) involve conversations about the Nonrecurring Engineering Costs (NRE) because they factor heavily into the end system cost, particularly at these volumes. We advise our clients that it doesn’t make sense to spend extra budget on engineering just to shave a few dollars off the controller price.

Production-Ready Rapid Prototyping Tools In Action:

A great example of our production-ready rapid prototyping tools in action is our work on the Walmart WAVE.

Walmart wanted to build a vehicle with an alternative-fuel powertrain for cleaner shipping. The concept involved an advanced on-highway hybrid Class 8 truck that would one day become the Walmart Advanced Vehicle Experience (WAVE).

Walmart enlisted our team to help develop the complicated control software and electric powertrain architecture. We quickly created a working system and built a custom interface into the WAVE’s microturbine controller, which facilitated the proprietary protocol over a serial interface.

In the end, our rapid development tools allowed Walmart to meet its timeline goals and showcase how green technology can be leveraged on-highway for cleaner shipping.

From Concept to Production, Faster

As the EV/HEV and autonomous markets mature, development tools will continue to evolve. Now you know that there are rapid prototyping tools that can stand up to the demands of production system development.

Remember, the right tools can help you with developing, designing, testing and validating your system so you can reduce risk and cost and get to production that much faster.

Download the Raptor eBook

June 2019 Raptor News

raptor 2019a

With summer, comes the biggest update to the Raptor platform of 2019–Raptor 2019a. Plus, get up-to-date on the latest articles, products, and training opportunities designed to help you take control of your project and overcome mechatronic control system challenges.

Raptor 2019a 

Raptor 2019a brings notable updates to the Raptor-Dev, Raptor-Cal and Raptor Test tools.  Check out the release notes on our wiki, or skim what’s new below:

Raptor-Dev 2019a

View our Raptor-Test regression reports for the Raptor-Dev 2019a_1.0 release here.

  • BCM48: CAN queue improvements, EEPROM driver enhancements, added Duty Cycle measurements for frequency inputs
  • GCM/ECM196: enhanced Application Monitor functionality, added redundant EEPROM capability, CAN2/3 robustness fixes, added J1939 support
  • GCM80: CAN queue improvements, CAN messaging fixes, added J1939 support
  • Displays: Updated default EEPROM storage logic, startup display improvements
  • Enhanced support for third-party calibration tools
  • Fault Manager enhancements
  • Improvements to the DBC CAN message blocks
Raptor-Cal 2019a
  • Transfer-Cals improvements
  • Stripchart autoscaling
  • Additional settings for compatibility with J1939
  • Resolved issues with Fault Manager support for Motohawk ECUs
  • Stability and performance enhancements
Raptor-CAN 2019a
  • Support for multi-bus simulation
  • Floating-point simulation precision fixes
  • Gateway function tool will now pass through new messages after initialization
  • Installer robustness improvements
  • Licensing updates
Raptor-Test 2019a
  • Improved initial ECU connection time
  • Added support for GCM70 and GCM80
  • Added additional script actions (Reflash, VerifyRunningSoftware, CANChannelUpdate)
  • Fixed enum variable handling
  • Custom plugin interface enhancements
  • Improved RPG file version migration
  • Licensing updates

Raptor Logo

Regression Testing

Inside every new Raptor-Dev release announcement, there’s a link to download the Raptor-Test regression reports that outline all individual regression tests ran on the software, noting whether or not those tests passed. If you’ve ever wondered what regression testing is–let alone, why it’s both useful and necessary for programs–read this helpful article to learn all about it.

 

test-summary-laptop

Telematics Gateway Unit 

This telematics gateway unit is summer 2019’s newest addition to Raptor Telematics product line, manufactured by a global leader in telematics manufacturing. This unit meets automotive quality standards, approved by major US and European OEMs, heavy-duty vehicle manufactures, and agricultural implement suppliers–a capability not found in most rugged embedded controllers! 

To learn more about this new hardware,  contact our sales team or click the button below.

 

telematics gateway unit
Don’t Miss Raptor Training on September 17-19, 2019

Registration for the fall Raptor Training Course is now open! Build your skills with this hands-on, in-depth course, taught by New Eagle’s Raptor experts. Sign up now to save your seat, or contact our team for more information.

 

 

raptor training

 

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