“Connected vehicles” generates discussion, but what does this mean and why is it important?
Garth D’Abreu, Director of Automotive Solutions at ETS-Lingren, explains the impact and challenges of connected vehicle technology on performance and verification testing.
How are connected vehicles transforming automotive test requirements?
“Connected vehicles” refers to communication between vehicles (vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V)), between vehicles and the surrounding communication infrastructure (vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) and vehicle-to-cloud (V2C)). To satisfy requirements of high network reliability, high data throughput and low latency, there are potential solutions with the dedicated short-range communications (DSRC), 4G and 5G based cellular networks. The developing Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) will rely on this communication network for increasing levels of vehicle autonomy. Current ADAS features including adaptive cruise control, autonomous emergency breaking, lane departure warning systems, and blind spot warning, to name a few, rely solely on the on board sensors. On board systems are currently included in the scope of module-based EMC tests. Over-the-air (OTA) communication for connected vehicles, however, necessitates additional measurements now required to verify wireless performance of the systems.
What are some of the top test and measurement considerations for automotive engineers?
In the rapidly evolving industry of autonomous, electric and hybrid vehicles, the ability to successfully provide vehicle level antenna pattern measurements as well as extended EMC measurements to verify ADAS performance will be key to the future of this market. EMC test requirements and methods have been fairly well established in the global automotive EMC standards for decades. However, verifying the wireless performance for successful connected vehicle communication is relatively new. The communication frequency range covering all of the potentially sensitive components and modules extends from 65MHz to 81GHz for Radio through the digital audio broadcasting (DAB), cellular, satellite navigation and RADAR bands. The performance testing now requires different levels ranging from the familiar EMC to the newer OTA based measurements. In many cases, the systems involved are intelligent and environment simulation is required to stress the system to a satisfactory level. Innovative testing solutions such as hybrid chambers designed to address environment simulation, EMC, and vehicle level antenna pattern/OTA measurements, will help drive the technologies forward to real-life applications.
What is the biggest concern for automotive testing of connected vehicles?
One of the concerns about ADAS features with increasing levels of autonomous control is the high safety factor that is an inherent part of the system. Intelligent sensor systems that are required to make control and operational decisions about the environment must be able to do this without the risk of interference. Rigorous vehicle level performance testing under real world conditions, antenna measurements to confirm module performance, and full vehicle measurements to address OTA performance will address public safety concerns. These measurements and traditional EMC testing ensure that entertainment and safety features on the vehicle work together. Today’s drivers expect safety features to operate flawlessly. In the future, with autonomous vehicles and no driver, it is critical that connected vehicles operate seamlessly, with no margin for error.
Director Automotive Solutions
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