A Seamless Implementation of Model-Based Design Applied to a New Fuel Control Feature for an Existing Engine ECU 2006-01-0612
Bringing a new automotive electronic control unit (ECU) to market is a multi-phase process. Generally speaking, the phases are engineering analysis, rapid prototyping, software implementation, test and calibration. A variety of engineering staff and tools are used as the ECU progresses through the development process. However, the use of different tools may require non-value-added steps to translate data and results from one process phase to another. This lack of integration introduces the potential for errors, adds delay and costs to projects, and makes it difficult to trace the behavior of the final product back to the original requirements.
Model-Based Design addresses many of the integration problems through use of executable specification models and automatic code generation. However, connecting the design effectively to the prototype vehicle provides additional integration challenges since it requires specialized hardware interfaces and target-specific software device drivers.
This paper describes how two sets of tools used together can meet these challenges and deliver the final product without inefficient transitions through ECU development phases. It is written around the implementation of a fuel control algorithm, from control strategy concept to final in-vehicle calibration. This paper first shows how in-vehicle rapid prototyping helps developers select the best algorithm candidate and then how embedded software can be automatically generated and tested: first in the lab, then on the dyno, then in the vehicle. Finally the paper describes how to calibrate the control system parameters based on the models and generated code.