With cars become ever more computerised, there is an increasing need for robust real-time embedded software to maintain the effectiveness and safety of critical onboard systems.
The IST-funded RISE project, which ended in February 2005, set out to address this demand by developing a software toolset specifically geared to the automotive industry.
RISE succeeded in delivering on all of its principal objectives and answers a genuine need in the automotive industry, according to project coordinator, Bernard Dion, Chief Technical Office of Esterel Technologies, the main partner in the project.
Among the principal challenges to be overcome in making the project a success, Bernard Dion cites the fact that model-based design and development is a relatively new concept in automotive applications. Another barrier was the relative lack of regulation to precisely describe the processes that are mandatory to follow in the development and verification of safety-related applications in cars.
“This has been regulated in the aeronautics industry for many years but is not yet the case in the automotive industry. Also, the adoption of new standards for buses (TTA or FLexRay) will still take a few years,” he says. Despite these difficulties, the project partners were pleased with the performance of the toolset when it was tested in a real-world environment.
“The RISE toolset was successfully tested by AUDI on a prototype car with a Drive-By-Wire system, where electronic controls are used to supplement the driver controls or even provide full authority over the vehicle functions, thus exercising all of the functionalities of the toolset,” says Dion.
With interest burgeoning in real-time embedded systems in automotive applications, the commercial prospects for RISE are plentiful, according to Bernard Dion. “The RISE toolset is currently in use at several automotive sites, at least partially, both with automotive manufacturers and suppliers, for production cars,” he says.
The progress made in the RISE project will also find new life in the IST project DECOS, which deals with the development of dependable architecture for domains such as the automotive or aeronautics sectors.
Tara Morris | alfa
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