“AUTOSAR simplifies the development process,” said Mark Lefebvre, Director of Strategic Alliances & Integrations, IBM Rational, in an interview with AEI. He is referring to the AUTomotive Open System Architecture, an open and standardized automotive electrical and software architecture jointly developed by automobile manufacturers, suppliers, and tool developers.
With AUTOSAR, simplicity is achieved through concurrent development. This means cost savings and faster development. “An industry-standard approach providing a standardized interface between mechanical hardware, ECUs, and application software means different organizations working separately on their individual parts know that these parts will work when they [are integrated],” he explained. Software engineers can provide AUTOSAR-compliant software that works on any AUTOSAR-compliant ECU, and vice versa.
“AUTOSAR is picking up steam,” he said. However, Lefebvre believes engineers and companies need a common development environment that integrates the individual tools for developing AUTOSAR-compliant components. A unified solution bridges a development “gap” between the electrical/electronic hardware and software development, test, and traceability. Such an integrated solution enables the concurrency promised by AUTOSAR by guaranteeing compliance to the standard.
Enter the joint project with partners Elecktrobit and IBM. They are delivering a development solution based on AUTOSAR 4.0.
“We integrated the Elektrobit tresos product set, which is focused on developing the runtime environment and software, and IBM's Rhapsody offering within Rational that does the modeling piece,” explained Lefebvre.
Using these tools now means a developer can guarantee the same AUTOSAR compliance for the runtime engine of the ECU and the application software that needs to run on it. Tresos provides a tested, end-to-end ECU software development tool-chain, according to IBM, while IBM's engineering tools allow systems modeling and design applications within the AUTOSAR 4.0 software architecture.
“Combined with EB tresos, engineers have the ability to test their design and software even before the future hardware is available,” said Lefebvre.
TRW, a leading supplier of automotive solutions, supports this joint project and anticipates significant tangible benefits from the interoperability between IBM Rational Rhapsody and EB tresos, according to IBM.
Elecktrobit has delivered the first compliant software development toolset for AUTOSAR 4.0 to carmakers and suppliers, according to the company.