Powertrain Real-Time Data Acquisition and Calibration without a Memory Description File 2008-32-0048
This paper describes a new method for performing real-time data acquisition (DAQ) and calibration for small engine control applications without the use of a memory description file. It will be shown that this method has key advantages over memory description based systems that are especially suited for small companies developing control systems for sale on the global market.
The advantages of such a method are two fold and are intended to be viewed relative to traditional Association for Standardization of Automation and Measuring Systems (ASAM)  based systems. First, the ASAM standard is broad and complex and is generally intended as a standardized means of interfacing an ECU to third party DAQ and calibration systems. These calibration systems are often costly and complex. The systems require the DAQ and calibration system vendors to customize tools to function optimally on a per-application basis. The method described in this paper allows for similar functionality without the complexity of the ASAM standard, allowing companies to develop in house solutions at a fraction of the cost of traditional systems. Finally, as modern engineering tasks become global endeavors, information typically housed within a single company is now shared amongst many. As a result, the need to protect intellectual property has never been greater. ASAM files contain information that describes intimate details of a given control ECU that could be used to make headway by competitive reverse engineering teams. The method described in this paper protects this sensitive information by embedding it in protected memory within the control ECU yet permits calibration of a fixed set of variables.
Aside from its advantages over ASAM based systems, this method shares many of the attributes that have made ASAM based systems the standard for modern DAQ and calibration tools. This includes: minimal overhead to support DAQ and calibration in the ECU firmware, portability between any family of microcontrollers, and versatility with respect to the means by which information is communicated to the calibration engineer's computer.