What They Call Vehicle Bus Communication: CAN— Introduction

Electronic communication has played such a significance that electronic comprises of 70 percent of systems in vehicles. The remaining 30 percent is mechanical components. Almost all safety relevant systems communicate via CAN or Flexray Bus. Our vehicle that we drive with approximately 150 ECUs have already made thousands, tens of thousands decisions for us by collecting tens of thousands of signals from various sensors.

Almost all systems having critical importance in terms of safety, communicate through CAN or Flexray bus communication.

When we try driving a very old vehicle ( like a model produced in 1980s) and another vehicle produced in 2019 and compare the two driving experiences, we are baffled by how people could drive these “really old” vehicles, and realize how little effort we put into “driving” a vehicle (Who knows how you will feel after seeing the 100% self driving automobiles on the street and that the driving licenses you obtained many years ago do not have any value?)

My special advice is to place cones on a straight line at regular intervals and try slaloming in between the cones at different speeds with both vehicles. 🙂 This will underline the importance of the saying “ Tool works, hand becomes proud of it.” Unfortunately, personally witnessed this during the test track of Bosch in Boxberg!

It is also vital to state that it is necessary to put extra effort into having an accident while driving a semi autonomous car: lane tracking, collision avoidance system, an adaptive cruise control system determining speed of the vehicle based on the vehicle in front rather than the driver (self acceleration and braking), automatic parking system (self parking), a 360° angled camera, a head up display, speed limit support, adaptive front-lighting system, esp, eps, abs

It is possible to see how the dynamic driving system I worked on for the four years impacts driving experience in the following example.

Network communication underlies all of this vast data transfer and decision making process. Totally different systems bring different requirements having different complexities and safety levels (ASIL) as well. For Example; the breakdown of which system will impact your driving: the steering wheel or air conditioner? Or do you want your ABS or in vehicle lighting system be processed in a short time?

For this reason, vehicle network communication has led to arousal of many communication protocols …

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Fundamentals – What is AUTOSAR? – Part 1

This article is geared towards mitigating the initial brain fog in understanding the AUTOSAR concept, and further discussing the capabilities and shortcoming of the ubiquitous AUTOSAR is.

Embedded software development in automotive industry is very different from typical software development scenarios in domains such as web development, windows-based application programming and so on. One of my former colleague Viktor Shepik as aptly described the automotive SW development situation in one of his blog posts. As Viktor rightfully mentions in the post, a software engineer is shocked when he/she steps into automotive software development, and IMHO it may come to some as an understatement.

Technical terms are domain specific jargons, compilers are tweaked and overhauled, rules of programming are stringent. Moreover experienced engineers aren’t either willing or don’t have the patience or time to share their vast accumulated knowledge with an automotive newbie. Existing information in the books has mostly nothing to do with practical day to day tasks at large.

What is AUTOSAR?

First of all, it is a consortium in order to standardize same or similar functionalities under an open and standardized layered software architecture for automotive *ECUs. The consortium was founded in 2003 by automotive giants like BMW, Daimler, VW, Ford, GM, Toyota, PSA, Continental ve Bosch. Automobile manufacturers, suppliers, software and tool developers work together under one roof. 

* ECU: Electronic Control Unit

Why is AUTOSAR needed?

The ever increasing E/E (Electric/Electronic) complexity of automotive systems was a major motivation which led to the development of the standard. A modern car may have more than 100 ECUs and each of them contains thousands of functions which must often be rewritten from scratch when hardware (processor type) is changed.

It was urgent need for automotive giants to cooperate together in order to make application software independent from hardware. In order to accomplish this, basic functions are implemented in AUTOSAR as an industry wide “standard core” solution and to make software modular and reusable.

What are goals?

The motto is simple: 

“Cooperate on standards, compete on implementation.”

  • With AUTOSAR, it is possible to develop the Software independent from ECU and this Software can be transferred or used in different Systems or ECUs. On the other hand, basic software can be used in different ECUs and areas. It can be adapted to different vehicles, platforms or hardwares
  • Compliant with all automotive international standards such as ISO 15767, ISO 14229, ISO

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