A Network Approach to Connecting Safety-Relevant Automotive Electronic Systems 2006-01-1495
Bus systems like CAN or FlexRay allowed great advances in automotive electronics over the last 20 years. In order to function in an environment which requires the communication medium to tolerate one safety-relevant fault, these bus systems require a second, redundant bus to act as a backup for the original unit. With the network approach presented in this paper (SafeNet) it is possible to use the network intrinsic redundancy to keep the network fail-safe after at least one safety relevant fault in the network. To ensure this, messages are relayed to every node in the network. Even though the message delivery times in the network are not deterministic, it is shown that it is suitable for safety-relevant applications like drive-by-wire. Due to the simple point-to-point connections used to connect the nodes, high speeds can be achieved. The network approach is compared to both CAN and FlexRay under different aspects.