What is Regression Testing and Why is it Necessary?

regression testing with raptor test

Have you noticed that, inside every new Raptor-Dev release announcement, there’s a link to download the Raptor-Test regression reports? In that download, we outline information for all of the individual regression tests run on software and whether or not those tests have passed. But what exactly is regression testing, and why is it necessary? Before you break out your old stats notebook to find out, know that regression tests have nothing to do with variable correlation–you’re thinking regression analysis.

test-summary-laptop

What is Regression Testing?

Throughout the software development life cycle, engineers create a suite of test cases to validate software against the associated test case prior to developing additional features. However, software development isn’t always linear. As software developers generate code, functions are added to enhance functionality or to respond to requirement changes. Not to mention, revisions are often necessary due to obligatory bug corrections or performance issues. Through this continuous evolution and expansion of software, it’s necessary to retest and confirm that new code doesn’t alter the existing functionality of the system. To do so, engineers will frequently run the previous test cases to prevent software modification from having adverse effects on existing code. This is referred to as regression testing.

 

Universal Regression Rig (URR)

 

Think of the word regression in terms of its meaning “the act of going back to a previous place or state.” It tests the software backwards, making sure new functions don’t break existing performance.

The Universal Regression Rig

Over the years at New Eagle, we focused on improving the regression testing method. Through this development, we built a Universal Regression Rig (U.R.R) to test software packages generated in Raptor-Dev on our Raptor based ECUs. When first developing this system, we concentrated on

  • Replacing our existing test boards with a more robust and repeatable system
  • Upgrading our testing procedures using a selection of advanced hardware
  • Organizing and consolidating our testing hardware
  • Streamlining our testing process to save time and improve the quality of our software systems

 

Universal Regression Rig Cover 

Built with aerospace-grade testing hardware, this rig is capable of complete I/O testing on up to eight Raptor ECUs. It also handles most (soon to be all) of the hardware circuit types supported by the various Raptor ECUs. Designed to ensure that if something doesn’t pass, the U.R.R. runs tests automatically so that our engineers can address the software rather than manually debug the rig itself.

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Why Regression Testing is Necessary

Now that you know what regression testing is and how it’s done, let’s talk about why it’s necessary. Regression testing is a part of all software development and maintenance. If a team fails to validate the functionality of the source code prior to release, errors can occur. The result of those errors can cause negative effects on those using the system. This is why it’s necessary.

However, disadvantages of regression testing do exist. It can become incredibly extensive depending on the complexity of the software. Why? Test cases are continuously added as software progresses. With both developing and running a hefty suite of test cases, regression testing becomes time consuming, expensive, and requires an advanced set of resources. In fact, much of a project’s budget and resource allocation is often set aside for regression testing.

Regression Testing Techniques

To offset the above issues, there are techniques to mitigate the time and cost associated with regression testing. To start with, try these three main techniques: Retest All, Regression Test Selection, Test Case Prioritization.

Regression Testing

Going back to our improvements on regression testing, we first test critical systems, followed by functional systems, and, finally, non-functional systems. This allows us to monitor software change modifications. If a program requires, we can execute performance testing. This test tracks the quality of the output by testing the system and monitoring the feedback response. As a whole, this entire process confirms that the system performs to customer expectations. It also measures the outcome in regards to user experience. For instance, in our drive-by-wire (DBW) system, we run tests to validate system command sends to turn the steering wheel. The wheel both turns the proper amount, indicating proper functionality and smooth turns, creating an enjoyable driving experience for passengers.

Testing Raptor Releases

When applying regression tests to Raptor, we run them against each internal build of Raptor-Dev with our Continuous Integration (CI) server. Our engineers integrate source code into our shared repository. From here, the CI server monitors our source code after each check-in. This automatically builds and tests the product to identify any potential errors. If an error occurs, the server alerts our team of the regression. The alert allows them to detect and correct problems early on. With this automation, we receive the added benefit of accelerated software releases.

The Three Stages of Regression Testing

We continue testing on every version of our Raptor Software Tools by pushing them through the three stages of regression testing. These three stages are software-only, processor-in-the-loop, and hardware tests.

Software-only tests ensure that each model previously built will continue to build. Every potential software release is tested across every possible Matlab Version currently supported by Raptor-Dev. These tests determine if the software is functioning correctly and identifies if any platform specific issues arise. Our engineers use software-only testing to guarantee that the new Raptor-Dev release will function for all customers across all supported platforms.

Processor-in-the-loop testing assures that each software version runs properly on the intended hardware. Raptor-Test scripts run against the hardware integrated with the new software release to validate whether all major functions work properly. This stage tests major features, such as interpolation tables, fault manager, and the J1939 protocol library.

Hardware tests, performed on our U.R.R., establish whether the hardware inputs and outputs function through all possible scenarios according to customer specifications with the new build of Raptor-Dev. Once a software package is flashed onto an ECU, the test module interfaces with a coordinator module. Then, test scripts are run to transmit and receive sensor and actuation signals between the two modules. Signals, such as analog inputs, are then rendered to the target hardware and become verified. Lastly, the coordinator hardware receives the test outputs to determine proper functionality for actuation signals. These signals include PWM and digital outputs (I/O).

Building Validation with Raptor-Test

Raptor-Test is a powerful software tool that, in conjunction with a test bench setup, facilitates testing of model-based software against a system’s requirements through simulated hardware-in-the-loop (SimHIL). SimHIL testing is a control systems validation strategy. It uses simulated I/O to verify that the software functions match the application requirements. By using a graphical PC interface, users quickly create and execute a test script over a USB-to-CAN interface, automating a once error-prone, manual testing process.

Raptor-Test configuration can vary with the application’s testing requirements. Some applications only require a PC to run Raptor-Test, a Kvaser cable for CAN-to-USB connection, and the ECU under test. For more complex applications, Raptor-Test can interface with both a Test Module and a Coordinator Module (which typically runs a plant model), transmitting and receiving simulated sensor and actuation signals between the two modules.

Raptor-Test

Building a validation test plan with Raptor-Test uses automation to reliably and repeatedly test your software changes. Ultimately, this improvement gives you greater confidence in your software, putting you on the path to production.

Develop Your Solution with the Intended Results

Software modifications occur throughout the development cycle, and regression testing is often tedious and overwhelming. However, it’s vital for ensuring your end product functions as intended. If you’re looking to develop a program that requires efficient and affordable regression testing prior to your solution’s release, contact New Eagle.

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What to Expect from Raptor™ 2019a

raptor 2019a release

Coming this week, our Raptor™ dev team will publish the Release Notes for the next major Raptor™ release, Raptor 2019a. See below for what improvements have been made. Plus, get the recap from the MathWorks Automotive Conference, learn more about upcoming Raptor training opportunities, and find out great ways to stay up-to-date with New Eagle events and the latest Raptor enhancements.

What’s New with Raptor 2019a

Raptor 2019a brings key improvements to Raptor-Dev, Raptor-Cal, Raptor-CAN, and Raptor-Test. Here’s what to expect: 

Raptor-Dev 2019a
  • 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

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

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

Note: To access the latest updates, you’ll need to have a maintenance plan that’s up-to-date. Get started with purchasing a maintenance plan by selecting the button below.

MathWorks Automotive Conference Recap

At the end of April 2019, New Eagle made its debut appearance as an exhibitor at the MathWorks Automotive Conference in Plymouth, Michigan. There, we shared information about embedded model-based development with Raptor™, an official MathWorks Partner product, while demonstrating our latest Raptor autonomous control solution, our drive-by-wire kit for the Chrysler Pacifica.

mathworks conference picture

You can see the drive-by-wire kit in-action on our YouTube channel and check out photos from the Mathworks Automotive Conference on Instagram.

Get Trained on Raptor

For new Raptor users, Raptor Training is one of the best ways to learn the fundamentals of embedded model-based development using the platform.

In this three-day, hands-on course, attendees create real-world applications using Matlab/Simulink and Raptor™, crafting models with Raptor-Dev, generating code, programming an ECU, and calibrating in real time.

This program is ideal for control system, application, and embedded software engineers, as well as technical program managers.

To register for the next session on September 17-19, 2019, click the button below.

Import Custom Source Code into Raptor Builds

power user tip blog cover

Have you ever wondered if you can import your own custom or legacy source code (*.c/*h files) into a Raptor build?

If you are current with Raptor, the answer is yes!

With Raptor 2018b, you can now  include code from the “slprj” directory. When Simulink generates shared utility code, it is placed in that directory.

How to Import Custom Source Code

There are a couple different ways to import custom source code, but the easiest is by creating a  directory named “Source” in the same directory as the model.

simulink shared utility

How to Call Custom Code

There are two key methods to call custom code while the Raptor ECU is running. The first is by using the Simulink Coder’s “Custom Code” blocks. The second is by writing an S-Function. Here is how to navigate both methods.

METHOD 1: Using Simulink Coder’s “Custom Code” Blocks

Begin by locating the “System Outputs” block. This will generate code specified in the block in the trigger where it is located.

custom code blocks

While this will allow you to call custom code, it does not provide ports. If the function you’re using requires an input or provides outputs, try the next method–writing an S-Function.

METHOD 2: Writing an S-Function

For functions involving ports, writing an  S-Function is a great way to navigate calling custom code. You can learn how to do this by reading the documentation on MathWorks website.

mathworks s funciton documentation screenshot

Stay Current with Raptor

Raptor 2019a will  improve integration with Simulink and its many methods for integrating custom code, including support for:

  1.    Custom Code pane in the Configuration parameters
  2.    MATLAB Functions
  3.    Simulink Functions/Function Callers

To ensure you have access to the upcoming Raptor 2019a update, your software maintenance plan will need to be current. If it is not already,  you can purchase maintenance or update your plan by contacting our team.

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Subscribe to Raptor News. You’ll get notifications about the latest updates, plus exclusive tips to help you get the most out of the Raptor platform.

New Eagle to Exhibit at MathWorks Automotive Conference

mathworks conference

Join New Eagle on April 30, 2019 at the MathWorks Automotive Conference in Plymouth, Michigan. While there, connect with automotive industry leaders to learn about the latest tools, applications and advancements enabled by MATLAB/Simulink.

Connect with New Eagle at the MathWorks Automotive Conference

Be sure to connect with us at our booth for the opportunity to speak with Ben Hoffman, Director of Raptor Platform, about Raptor, our MathWorks partner product.

Ben will provide in-depth details about how this embedded model-based development platform is expediting technologies’ time-to-market through fast, efficient, and reliable production control solutions. Plus, experience  in-action demos of our Raptor-enabled drive-by-wire Chrysler Pacifica.

Registration for the 2019 conference is free, but required. Sign up on MathWorks’ website or by clicking the button below. 

Conference Details

The 2019 event is held from 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. at the Inn at St. Johns (44045 Five Mile Road, Plymouth, MI 48170). For more information, visit MathWorks’s website.

How the ISO 26262: 2018 Update Affects You

ISO 26262 2018 update

At the end of 2018, the long-awaited update to the ISO 26262 standard was finalized and published. This new version expands the scope of the original 2011 publication to incorporate additional safety measurements and industry segments beyond the original passenger vehicle applications. With this expansion, many of our customers are coming to us with the same questions: Does this updated standard apply to my project and how do I incorporate it into my development process?

Does the ISO 26262 Apply to Your Project?

Although the ISO 26262 standard can seem complex and overwhelming, we can guide you in the right direction and help you to answer the important questions. With our team of Automotive Functional Safety Engineers (AFSEs), we will show you a path to production that incorporates the necessary safety standards that are required for today’s various industries. We will assist your company in clarifying whether the updated ISO 26262 standard applies to your project, conduct a risk assessment of your product and development cycle, provide you with ISO capable hardware, and teach you how to incorporate the required development processes necessary to achieve the safety standard.

What is ISO 26262?

ISO 26262 is an international standard for road vehicles that provides a framework for functional safety throughout the progression of electrical and electronic (E/E) systems development. While some requirements are product specific, others focus on the safety regulations throughout the development lifecycle. These standards demonstrate how companies should integrate functional safety into their development process, providing regulations and recommendations on how to achieve appropriate functional safety measures. To put it simply, this is a common standard that measures and verifies the safety of a system before it is put into service.

ISO 26262 uses a system of steps to provide companies with a way to manage the functional safety and regulate product development on the system, hardware, and software from conceptual development through decommissioning. The steps include administering an automotive risk-based approach to determine the risk classes of a system, called Automotive Safety Integrity Levels (ASILs). It also includes practices that validate and confirm that a vehicle sufficiently reaches an acceptable level of safety.

What Revisions Were Made to ISO 26262 In 2018?

The 2018 revision to the ISO 26262 standard, titled “Road Vehicles – Functional Safety, includes industry feedback and updates based on advances in technology since the standard was originally published. The standard was reconstructed to provide more detailed objectives and extensions to the overall vocabulary. Additions to the ISO standard include:

  • Objective oriented confirmation measures
  • Management of safety anomalies
  • References to cyber-security
  • Updated target values for hardware architecture metrics
  • Evaluation of hardware elements
  • Additional guidance on dependent failure analysis
  • Guidance on fault tolerance, safety-related special characteristics, and software tools.
  • Guidance for model-based development and software safety analysis

In addition, two completely new standards were added to the document: ISO 26262-11 for Semiconductors and ISO 2626-12 for Motorcycles.

The main addition that is concerning our customers is the revision that increases the scope of the standard beyond light-duty, automotive passenger applications to include trucks, buses, trailers, semitrailers, and motorcycles.

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How and When Does ISO 26262 Apply to Your Project?

Firstly, let’s address when your system is not required to abide by the newly released ISO 26262 standard. Unique E/E systems in special vehicles are exempt from the standard, including:

  • Mopeds
  • Prototypes
  • Systems designed for drivers with disabilities
  • Systems and any components released for production prior to the publication date
  • Systems and any components under development during the publication date

The standard is intended to be applied to safety-related E/E systems in production road vehicles, which are any vehicle used by or used among the general public. As stated above, this now incorporates trucks, buses, trailers, semitrailers, and motorcycles. In addition, if you are conducting alterations to an existing system that was released for production prior to the publication date, then it falls within the scope of the updated standard.

What Does an ASIL Requirement Mean and How is it Determined?

In order to understand what ASIL requirements are, we must first look at Hazard Analysis and Risk Assessments (HARA). HARAs are used to identify and classify hazardous events caused by malfunctioning behaviors within the system. Each hazard is assessed based on the relative effect the hazardous incident could have on the overall E/E system and is dependent on the probability of the hazard actually manifesting. The assessment also takes into account the severity of potential bodily injuries that could be attained by the driver or other passengers within the relative amount of time the vehicle is exposed to the hazard, as well as the probability of whether a typical driver could prevent injury from occurring. Once all the hazards are assessed, the HARA process creates safety goals to prevent or reduce each hazard, assigning each safety goal an Automotive Safety Integrity Level (ASIL).

ASILs are an automotive specific, risk-based approach that determine the risk classes and integrity levels of each safety goal. They also determine if the safety goals abide by the ISO safety standard. The determination of the ASIL is a function of three variables: exposure, severity, and controllability.

Exposure – how often does the operational situation occur?

ASIL-class

Severity – how severe is the potential harm?

ASIL-severity

Controllability – are the occupants, or operator, able to take control to mitigate any potential injuries?

ASIL-controllability

Since the ISO 26262 standard was originally published in 2011, industry experience and practice in this area has formalized into “SAE J2980 – Considerations for ISO 26262 ASIL Hazard Classification.” This document provides guidelines as to what each level means in a typical scenario. For example, controllability class C2 ‘Normally controllable’ would be true if 90% or more of all drivers are usually able to take control and avoid the specified harm. The guidelines can act as a rule-of-thumb in cases that require a judgement call.

Once these three items are established for each safety goal, the ASIL can be determined using the chart below.

ASIL-qualitymanaged-chart

While a “quality managed” (QM) rating signifies that the safety goal is not severe enough to require specific regulations through the standard, those that are will be given a rating of ASIL A through ASIL D depending on the severity.

The determined ASILs will be further refined into Functional Safety Requirements (FSRs), incorporating these same ASIL designations. At some point throughout the development process, the requirements will be allocated to units (e.g. ECUs) for implementation.

The Cost of ASIL Compliance

The cost and complexity of compliance may increase by as much as an order of magnitude with each step, ranging throughout ASIL A to ASIL D. While ASIL A may have small limited effects on the development process, it is assumed that safety goals with an ASIL D rating have significant cost and timing effects for a program.

For example, to plan, execute, verify, and document compliance, the following effort multipliers could be considered:

Functional System : 1
ASIL A : 1.5x – 3x
ASIL B : 2x – 4x
ASIL C : 5x – 8x
ASIL D : 10x+

These multipliers depend heavily on current process maturity, system design, and system requirements. Specific requirements and obligatory work items for software, hardware, and tools are provided within the safety standard.

How Can ASIL Decomposition Save Time and Money?

ISO 26262:9 describes ASIL-oriented and safety-oriented analyses. One of which is ASIL Decomposition, whereby ASIL safety levels and requirements are decomposed over redundant and sufficiently independent elements within your design. As higher ASILs typically require higher costs, decomposition can help to meet safety requirements with reduced cost and effort.

Decomposing the different ASIL levels typically follows a predefined pattern, often occurring over multiple ASIL levels since the ISO standard allows for multilevel decomposition. The figure below shows an example of the decomposition of an ASIL D using three different approaches.

Decomposition of the different ASIL ratings throughout the system can occur over different elements, working down through the system, subsystems, software, and hardware. ASIL decomposition is typically performed manually and must result in redundant safety requirements allocated to design elements of sufficient technical independence. Here at New Eagle, we have certified staff and experience with ASIL tailoring, such as ASIL Decomposition, which may be applied within your project to save cost and time.

Path to Production

Based on your ASIL allocations after decomposition, you need to select an ECU to be utilized in your design that will best meet the requirements defined by the ISO 26262 standard. For each ASIL, you will likely have a list of required diagnostic coverage mechanisms. In a typical safety design, for example, processors integrate a self-checking safety monitor. Additionally, intended hardware typically includes pre-established safety features, such as error correcting code (ECC) and a programmable watchdog timer, to help detect system failures and runtime faults. A modern central processing unit (CPU) will utilize a multicore architecture with a hardware lock-step safety mechanism, which can significantly reduce complexity while improving reliability and availability. These modern architectures include built-in self-test and optimization to prevent common cause failures.

Using an off-the-shelf component in a safety design requires that the component be capable of executing the necessary functions, compatible with your system design, and well documented. Typically, the component would be documented as a Safety Element out of Context (SEooC). It’s important to understand which subcomponents in the ECU can be defined as a safety-critical dependent for an application, as these elements may be used in your safety design. Diagnostic coverage mechanisms must be in place and able to detect dangerous failures within these components in order for them to be used in a safety function. These assumptions should be documented by the ECU vendor within a Safety Manual, and must be taken into account. They provide constraints on the applicability of an off-the-shelf part for any given design.

Here at New Eagle, we have several Raptor™ hardware design options available for production projects that require ISO 26262. These safety capable ECUs target ASIL B – ASIL D, and include a range of I/O and communication interfaces.

electronic control module

  • GCM196 / ECM196 –This ASIL B capable hardware design is built on the standard automotive e-gas monitoring concept commonly used for powertrain control. Depending on the results of ASIL Decomposition, this is an excellent option for multiple safety goals with various ASIL ratings. This control module has three CAN buses, one LIN bus, and a large variety of I/O.
  • C48 – This powerful general-purpose control module is perfect for applications that require advanced performance, timing systems, and functional safety capabilities. The CPU is a high-performance multi-core architecture that can support the highest level of functional safety (ASIL-D).
  • GCM121 – This ASIL C capable, general-purpose control module is perfect for applications that require advanced performance, timing systems, and functional safety capabilities. It has a broad communication capacity with its four CAN buses, two LIN buses, and one Ethernet bus.
  • C112 – This powerful general-purpose control module is perfect for applications that require advanced performance and heavy communication requirements due to its four CAN buses, two LIN buses, and Ethernet capabilities. The CPU is a high-performance multi-core architecture that can support the highest level of functional safety (ASIL-D).

These examples illustrate a range of design options, which can be matched with your system requirements to create a solution compatible with your needs. All ISO 26262 production projects require safety planning and implementation assistance from our Functional Safety Certified staff. Please contact our sales team to discuss our available options.

Important Safety Standard Considerations

It is important to consider ISO 26262 safety standards when developing electronic systems, especially since this standard now incorporates a variety of road vehicle applications. Failing to do so and potentially overlooking possible vehicle malfunctions during the development process could result in liability issues for the manufacturer down the road.

For those companies that are unfamiliar with ISO 26262, seeking consultation from our AFSEs will help you to incorporate the safety standard into your development. Our engineering expertise and line of rugged, ISO 26262 capable hardware design options will help you build an efficient path to production.

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April 2019 2Q News: EV and HEV Products

april 2019 news

April has arrived, bringing New Eagle into 2019’s second quarter. With it, comes more robust ways to take control of your machine while managing development timelines and cost.

If you’re planning to start an EV/HEV solution, learn about our

to help get you started.

EV and HEV Products

Great new products join the Raptor family, making it faster, easier and more reliable than ever for you to take your EV/HEV machines on a path from concept to production. Here are a few of our favorite additions:

  • GCM80 joins the Raptor product line as an eVCU offering high-volume ECU with 4 CAN, LIN and seamless integration with Raptor’s development tools and process.
  • HV Heater & A/C options for 400V EV systems from Mitsubishi are production-validated automotive units ideal for EV/HEV projects.
  • Axial Flux Motors from Magelec are permanent magnet motors improving EV efficiency while offering flexible design options.
  • RMS/BorgWarner Next Generation Inverters are designed for volume OEM and heavy equipment EV and HEV applications.

Get details on these and more EV and HEV product options for your on and off-road machines by visiting our Product Wiki.

Starting an EV/HEV Project?

If you’re beginning an electric drivetrain project, request New Eagle’s Feasibility Guide. Created by safety-certified engineers, its valuable insights help navigate this “phase zero” stage of development so your project gets on the best path to production. 

New Eagle Electric Vehicle feasibility guideIdentifying a Production ECU Supplier

For developers navigating the early stages of machine development, selecting a production ECU supplier is one of the most important decisions to make in the process. Unfortunately, it’s not an easy one. Find out what you should ask and look for before selecting a supplier for your project.

new eagle production ecu supplier

May 2019 Raptor Training

Our popular Raptor Training program returns to New Eagle’s Headquarters in Ann Arbor, Michigan on May 7-9, 2019.

In this three day class, attendees will build on the fundamentals of embedded model-based design using the Raptor platforms Raptor-Dev and Raptor-Cal, while applying controls, embedded systems and MATLAB Simulink/Stateflow knowledge.

Space is limited, so register before it runs out!

 

 

Featured Application: Electric Rock Crusher

Our application engineering team leveraged Raptor™ to electrify Kolberg-Pioneer’s industrial rock crusher, creating a solution Kolberg-Pioneer hopes to scale to a new generation of electric-power machines. Read how in this case study.kolberg pioneer gt440 electric rock crusher

Stay In-the-Know

Be among the first to know about new product additions, upcoming events, and exclusive insights by subscribing to our eNews.

Drive-By-Wire Kits Widen Horizons for Production-Scale Autonomous Technology

drive-by-wire kits

As autonomous vehicle technology continues its rapid advancement, more and more developers struggle to identify a platform bridging their autonomous command system with vehicular actuation that is easily scaled to production. While there are a number of research-geared solutions on the market, few offer the safe, automotive-grade components necessary for a seamless transition to production.

For developers serious about bringing their autonomous technology to market, a platform comprised of automotive-grade components, like New Eagle’s drive-by-wire kits, could prove the solution they need.

Drive-By-Wire Kits: Uniting AI and Automotive

New Eagle’s drive-by-wire kits allow developers’ AI systems to interface using ROS. Translating these ROS commands into CAN signals, the drive-by-wire kit delivers reliable control over throttle, brake, steering and shifting in production vehicles. Combining production, automotive-grade hardware with proven control software, New Eagle’s drive-by-wire kits offer developers a solution better-aligned to meet production requirements than research-intent alternatives.

Designed with Safety First

Designed by safety-certified engineers, all drive-by-wire kits include seven driver intervention overrides to ensure safe vehicle operation. From command, steering, throttle, shift, brake, and e-stop overrides, to an innovative “heartbeat” system that regularly checks for reliable connection between vehicle and autonomous command center, New Eagle’s drive-by-wire solutions are ideal, safety-focused platforms for advancing autonomous technology to production.

More Kits, More Possibility

With kits available for a growing number of production vehicles including the Toyota Prius, Chrysler Pacifica, Jeep Grand Cherokee, and Volvo Class 8 Truck, autonomous system solutions like the drive-by-wire aren’t just supporting faster and safer development–they’re expanding the horizons for real-world autonomous application.

drive-by-wire vehicles
New Eagle’s drive-by-wire kits for production vehicles enable faster autonomous development on a reliable plug-and-play platform, supporting an expedited path to production for developers’ autonomous technologies.

From passenger mobility to fleet and off-road applications, autonomous advancement is now more accessible than ever with innovative control solutions like the drive-by-wire kit. Learn how New Eagle’s drive-by-wire kit could support your autonomous goals and path to production by discussing your project with our engineers. To see the drive-by-wire kit in action, watch the video below.

 


Get Autonomous Faster with New Eagle

Raptor-Dev2018b_2.2 (SP1) and Raptor-Cal 2018b_3.0 Releases

raptor-enews-march

Developing an autonomous vehicle? New Eagle’s latest releases are Raptor-Dev2018b_2.2 (SP1) and Raptor-Cal 2018b_3.0. Read the summary below to quickly find out what we have improved. For full details, go to software.neweagle.net.

raptor software

Raptor-Dev 2018b_2.1 (SP1)

  • Resolved issue with Standard Fault Manager Fault Status Block Use With Iterator
  • Updated GCM80 CAN Baud Rate Configurability
  • BCM48 CAN3 message transmission on power up
  • BCM48 Wake Source Configurability Enhancements

Raptor-Cal 2018b_3.0

  • Improvements for calibration of Fault Manager for Motohawk ECUs
  • Handling of BitField variable types for MotoHawk ECUs
  • Handling of Exponent field on variables for Motohawk ECUs
  • Resolved issue with automatic uninstall of prior version during new installation
  • Several Usability Improvements in Charting & Transfer/Compare Cals

For more information about these latest Raptor updates, read the Raptor Release Notes.

Download the Raptor eBookAre You in the Raptor Community?

Subscribe to our Raptor eNews to received exclusive information on our software releases, training options, tips, tricks, and early announcements! It’s the best way to stay in-the-know about innovative ways to take control of your project.

NEWLY RELEASED: Raptor-Dev2018b_2.2 (SP1) and Raptor-Cal 2018b_3.0

raptor-enews-march

As of today, New Eagle’s latest releases are Raptor-Dev2018b_2.2 (SP1) and Raptor-Cal 2018b_3.0! You can view the full details at software.neweagle.net. To get the summary, read on to quickly find out what we improved.

In addition to the releases, we’ve added details about our upcoming Raptor Training class. Register now to take advantage of our early bird special!

Raptor-Dev 2018b_2.1 (SP1)

  • Resolved issue with Standard Fault Manager Fault Status Block Use With Iterator
  • Updated GCM80 CAN Baud Rate Configurability
  • BCM48 CAN3 message transmission on power up
  • BCM48 Wake Source Configurability Enhancements

Raptor-Cal 2018b_3.0

  • Improvements for calibration of Fault Manager for Motohawk ECUs
  • Handling of BitField variable types for MotoHawk ECUs
  • Handling of Exponent field on variables for Motohawk ECUs
  • Resolved issue with automatic uninstall of prior version during new installation
  • Several Usability Improvements in Charting & Transfer/Compare Cals

For more information about these latest Raptor updates, read the Raptor Release Notes.

Register for Spring 2019 Raptor Training

Join us in May for our popular Raptor Training program where you will participate in a three-day embedded model-based controls development course to gain hands-on experience with the Raptor-Dev and Raptor-Cal tools!

Using a throttle body controller project as a guide, you will be introduced to Raptor-Dev in the MATLAB/Simulink library by creating a model intended for a target piece of hardware. You will then use Raptor-CAL to flash the compiled software onto the hardware and to make live calibratable adjustments on the flashed ECU.

With only 10 seats available, registration is on a first come basis. Register by April 5th to take advantage of our EARLY BIRD discount!

 

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What Does It Mean to be a Production ECU Supplier?

new eagle bosch ecu

An electronic control unit (ECU) is the foundation of nearly all machines with mechanical and electronic components. If you think of a machine as a “human body,” then the ECU is its brain. It acts as the command center for components to tell parts how and when to operate with each other and the surrounding environment. Whether temperature regulation, power distribution, or movement control, ECUs keep systems running quickly, safely and efficiently.

For developers navigating the early stages of machine development, selecting a production ECU is one of the most important decisions in this process. Unfortunately, it’s not an easy one to make. There are a lot of ECUs on the market at a variety of price points, so narrowing down one that’s right for you is challenging. Not to mention, choosing a production supplier can have a large effect on your whole project. This decision will affect your project timeline, what resources you need for development and their cost, as well as end system bill of material costs and final quality.

With all these variables in play, where exactly should you start?

ECU Hardware

Since the ECU is the brain of your machine, it should be a high-quality component that economically fits into your system. Consider how a prospective ECU supplier’s hardware stacks up against the competition by asking yourself these four questions:

1. How does the ECU’s quality compare to industry standards?

The ECU you select should be developed to the highest quality standards. Otherwise, you risk problems down the line that could impact end-product quality, customer perception, and your bottom line.

Quality manufacturing processes require significant investment which must spread over many units. Avoid these issues by looking for an ECU from a high-volume supplier.New Eagle Production ECU Supplier2. Is the pricing economical at volume?

Consider scalability. Ask if the supplier can meet your demand and offer volume pricing. These questions will help you maximize your budget and minimize frustrating hold-ups as you scale up from concept to production.

3. Is the production supply chain secure?

You shouldn’t invest in development, tuning, validation, and processes only to discover that the ECU supplier has gone out of business, dropped your ECU selection from its offering, or made a significant change without warning.

Think about supply chain security, or look for an ECU production provider who carefully selects suppliers such as major OEMS, like BOSCH, Continental and Visteon, to provide mass quantities of reliable ECUs. 

4. Can I easily select hardware variants for other applications?

Once you select a production vendor, your team will invest time and resources learning the ECU and its associated products and tools. What happens for your next application or product? Ask targeted questions to find out if you can select other ECUs with minimal changeover effort from your hardware supply chain vendor. For example, is it easy to move software over to another ECU? Do supporting tools or staff training transfer over?

Which ECU is Right for You?

Software Development

Typically, selecting an ECU dictates the next steps for creating the software to drive your system. Since this software development engineering effort usually accounts for a significant amount of a project’s budget, consider these three questions:

1. Is the supplier flexible enough to handle your development plan?

If you plan to work iteratively, make sure your supplier’s tools and processes support fast development. Find out beforehand if you will have to wait weeks to change something like an input/output pin or CAN message definition. If your design changes during development, your software needs to adapt quickly.

2. Do you want to have control over your intellectual property and project timeline, or would you prefer to depend on the ECU production supplier for future software changes?

If you plan to hire an ECU supplier to create a turnkey solution for you, ask if you’ll receive the source code at the end of the project. Know ahead of time if you’ll be able to make minor tweaks to the functionality on your own, or if you will need to re-engage the supplier.

Without the ability to make changes on your own, you’ll lose control of your project’s timeline. Re-engaging down the line is costly and time-consuming, which could lead to missed opportunities for your solution in the market. If intellectual property is considered a part of the value of your company’s solution, then it’s important to determine if you’ll own the software after the project.

3. Do you have additional requirements for data logging and connectivity? If so, have you considered how the ECU selection may influence this?

Custom solutions for data logging or remote connectivity adds significant time, cost, and risk to your project plan. Will you need to provide remote, over-the-air updates for ECUs in your system? Typically, this will require cooperation with the ECU vendor. Before you undertake any engineering efforts to source a supplier, find out what’s already supported or can be provided quickly.

ECU Production Service, Support & Warranty

As the electronic ‘brain’ of your system, the ECU will drive the overall machine operation. Consequently if there’s an issue, oftentimes this stops development progress and puts your business opportunity at risk.

Finally, ask about product warranties. Since each ECU has operation limits for each circuit, you’ll need to be sure your application won’t overwhelm the hardware – will you need support from your vendor to be certain that you aren’t abusing the hardware and thus nullifying a standard warranty?  Will your supplier tailor a Production Supply Agreement specific to their needs? The production supply agreement should include an engineering analysis and documentation of how the customer’s application uses ECU resources, assuring operation within hardware specifications.

Consider these two questions so that you can identify a reliable supplier and avoid these risks.

1. Is the production ECU supplier accessible and responsive?

A motivated supplier is key to your success. With many ECU suppliers only offering support to developers producing over 10,000 units per year, identifying a vendor appropriately-sized for your solution may prove challenging.

Ask a prospective vendor what account size they commonly handle. Frankly, if most of their accounts are 20,000-50,000 units/year, do you think you’ll get first priority when you give them a call and tell them you only have a need for 500 units/year?

2. Does the vendor have templates, intellectual property and training to help you and your team get started quickly?

Your ECU supplier should understand your challenges and offer ways to accelerate time-to-market and continued success. Therefore, ask about application templates, engineering resources and training. Clarify if they’ll add on further training and resources to onboard new additions to your team later on. This willingness to work with you and be flexible with your needs can make a huge impact on your timeline and success.

Contact a Production ECU Supplier Today

We have spent years developing relationships with industry-leading, global suppliers to develop a comprehensive line of products. Our team of experts can identify the best production ECUs to meet the needs of your solution. Contact our team today to discuss how we can work with you to meet your project’s goals!

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