Siemens Digital Industries Software solutions and services enable FAW to develop a consistent modeling approach
Chinese automotive development center uses Simcenter to build a full virtual platform for vehicle development and controls verification
China FAW Co., Ltd. R&D Center is the largest research, development, test and inspection facility for the automotive industry in China, and is a key technology center for both the OEM FAW Group Corporation and Chinese government. The company focuses on developing commercial vehicles and automotive components.http://www.rdc.faw.com.cn/
- Changchun, China
Designing smart vehicles
The China FAW Co., Ltd. R&D Center is the largest research, development, test and inspection facility for the automotive industry in China, and is a key technology center for the original equipment manufacturer (OEM), the FAW Group Corporation, and the Chinese government. The company focuses on developing commercial vehicles and automotive components, and has engineering expertise that covers the entire vehicle development cycle.
The China FAW Group Corporation R&D Center is tasked with setting up the research and development (R&D) function for its department of intelligent networking vehicles so it can develop smart vehicles, which is an important issue in the country’s “Made in China 2025” initiative. Electrifying and automating driving functions leads to increased system complexity and requires upfront validation of controllers.
Developing intelligent networking vehicles is currently the focus of many carmakers in China and elsewhere, so the call to develop relevant technologies is gaining The China FAW Group Corporation R&D Center is tasked with setting up the research and development (R&D) function for its department of intelligent networking vehicles so it can develop smart vehicles, which is an important issue in the country’s “Made in China 2025” initiative. Electrifying and automating driving functions leads to increased system complexity and requires upfront validation of controllers.
Developing intelligent networking vehicles is currently the focus of many carmakers in China and elsewhere, so the call to develop relevant technologies is gaining strength. It is both an opportunity for Chinese carmakers to catch up with global giants and a significant challenge for the FAW R&D Department of Intelligent Networking Vehicles as the design of advanced vehicles requires the intensive use of advanced development technologies.
Implementing model-based systems engineering
The FAW R&D Department of Intelligent Networking Vehicles was looking for a supplier with experience in full vehicle modeling, including real-time and online plant modeling and controls development. Additionally, they wanted to improve their development process and were looking for a partner that was open to sharing its knowledge and methodologies.
“On the one hand, we needed to be able to perform offline simulation using the entire vehicle model to analyze vehicle performance and meet the demand for real-time simulation of the hardware-in-the-loop test platform,” says Zheng Lei, administrative office director of the FAW R&D Department of Intelligent Networking Vehicles. “On the other hand, we also needed a technology partner to increase our internal knowledge via a technology transfer service.”
Simcenter Engineering services introduced FAW to the latest tools and techniques by using Simcenter Amesim™ software, part of the Simcenter portfolio from Siemens Digital Industries Software. Simcenter Amesim supports model-based systems engineering (MBSE) by helping users create models of varying complexity according to requirements at different stages of vehicle development. With Simcenter Amesim, FAW not only managed to develop offline simulation models with unprecedented accuracy, but they can also use them in an extensive number of real-time simulation scenarios. This in turn enables them to perform hybrid hardware-in-the-loop (HiL) testing for controls verification and model validation.
“Simcenter Amesim provides an easy-touse, open development environment that enables joint modeling and effective deployment among different departments, as well as between departments and suppliers,” says Zheng. “It facilitates a consistent modeling approach in spite of different levels of model complexity throughout the development process.”
In addition to the software license, Simcenter Engineering provided a technology transfer. Throughout the collaboration, Simcenter Engineering trained the FAW staff to apply the same methodologies for other scenarios as well, and to integrate them as part of the FAW standard design process. Zheng appreciates this support: “The Simcenter Engineering team understands customer requirements, shares the latest technology, regularly invites domestic and international experts to hold seminars and technological exchanges, and are good at putting themselves in their customers’ shoes. The technical ability of Simcenter Engineering has won high praise from FAW project teams.”
Working together seamlessly
The FAW R&D Department of Intelligent Networking Vehicles and Simcenter Engineering teams have worked together seamlessly to build up a solid framework for advanced vehicle dynamics analysis related to both offline and real-time simulation.
The Simcenter Engineering team helped FAW virtually validate the vehicle’s electronic controls units (ECUs), such as electric power steering (EPS), electronic stability program (ESP) and anti-lock braking system (ABS). First, the engineering experts assisted FAW with defining processes and integrating models. Using Simcenter Amesim, they built accurate engine, transmission and powertrain models. Next, they set, created and ran scenarios with animation. More than 20 scenarios were defined to be validated on the HiL test bench, which were able to run in real-time with the dashboard feature. Finally, Simcenter Engineering assisted with the development of a real-time predictive control (MPC) driver model for vehicle trajectory control. This model provides a systematic, streamlined procedure for designing highly complex multivariable control systems and is capable of automatically generating road and target trajectories.
Thanks to the guidance and assistance from Simcenter Engineering engineers in formulating software and hardware integration schemes for various platforms, the company now has the ability to run models for different hardware systems.
Taking advantage of Simcenter
By using Simcenter Amesim and taking advantage of the expertise of Simcenter Engineering, FAW was able to complete a real-time modeling project for a vehicle the company developed independently. FAW used HiL simulation and test to conduct vehicle controller testing and troubleshooting via virtual simulation, shorten the controller development time and greatly reduce the vehicle electric control system development cycle.
All units of the FAW R&D Department of Intelligent Networking Vehicles use Simcenter Amesim to design vehicle systems, which has greatly facilitated system integration, controls validation, HiL simulation as well as model verification. Simcenter Amesim functionalities that are used include engine high-frequency models, real-time model reduction tools and the Functional Mockup (FMU) interface for model exchange and tools coupling.
The China FAW Group Corporation R&D Center has been a long-time leader in the area of HiL system simulation and test in China, and is trying to catch up with the international level.
“By using Simcenter solutions, we now have the capabilities to model independently, which makes us even more competitive,” says Zheng. “We’ll continue working with world-class suppliers like Siemens Digital Industries Software to advance the development of products and technologies.”