The aerospace industry is currently experiencing an unprecedented transformation towards greener, more sustainable, and safer transportation. Technological trends such as more electric aircraft, electric or hydrogen propulsion, and highly-automated or even autonomous air transportation represent the most significant changes in the industry since decades. At the same time, new fields of operation offer new opportunities for both existing and new players in the market: Various companies are pushing the development of flying cars and air taxis in the context of urban air mobility or bringing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) such as drones to the next level to enable new applications, for example, last-mile delivery or airborne emergency services.
Electric drives and advanced power electronics play a key role in novel aircraft design, targeting electric architectures that rely on battery or fuel cells as source of energy. These profound changes lead to new challenges in the development process, both for design and implementation as well as for validation and verification. In order to limit currents and wiring diameters while meeting increasing power demand, new design concepts rely on power grids for high-voltage direct current and highly-efficient power electronics. Redundant system architectures and extensive testing according to the safety criticality of a function are required to avoid catastrophic events during operation of the aircraft systems. However, high frequencies and highly-dynamic system behavior demand not only new control strategies, often implemented in hardware on an FPGA. In addition, a corresponding test environment is required to detect defects in the control software as early as possible in the development process.
dSPACE Solutions for Electric Flight
dSPACE offers a broad range of systems and tools to help you master the challenges of aircraft electrification and electric flight at every development stage. Whether you need a platform for function development, hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) simulation, or power-level testing on test benches, dSPACE has the right solution for your needs. This allows our customers to significantly reduce development time and cost for key components such as electric drives, power electronics, or Battery Management Systems (BMS), and subsequent system integration testing.
Central Test Method for Validating ECUs
The dSPACE HIL test systems provide a simulated environment for efficient and reproducible validation of real ECUs in the laboratory 24/7. This increases test coverage and shortens validation times significantly. Our HIL solutions cover all vehicle domains from autonomous driving to zero emissions – starting with component testing and up to virtual vehicle testing.
Closing the Gap Between HIL and Dynamometer Testing
With our power HIL systems, we offer ready-to-use solutions for testing any kind of inverter, including the controller and power electronics, at full power. Using real voltages and currents, our systems enable you to complete exceptionally rigorous tests. Our systems behave like a digital twin of the real system and allow for easy configuration with just a few clicks, which significantly reduces setup times.
Software-in-the loop (SIL) testing with the powerful dSPACE solution for PC- and cloud-based simulation
With the dSPACE solution for software-in-the loop (SIL) testing, you can significantly accelerate your software development process by testing and validating virtually. dSPACE offers you a complete, modular, scalable development and test solution. You can conveniently simulate a device-under-test on a PC, connect it to physics-based models, run scalable tests in the cloud, and then easily reuse test scripts on hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) systems.
Data Management and Collaboration Software for Automated ECU Testing
SYNECT, our solution for the efficient and automated verification and validation of ECU software, helps engineers worldwide handle all test parameters, their dependencies, versions and variants, and the underlying requirements throughout the entire development process.
This results in consistent data versions and complete traceability as required in homologation processes, and an efficient reuse of data in other projects.
Turn-key solutions – optimally adapted to your requirements
ECUs that cannot be accessed by means of their electrical interfaces can be tested with the highly dynamic dSPACE test benches. The turn-key solutions can be optimally adapted to your specific requirements, letting you use highest performance and most complex control for electric drives providing ideal mechanical interfaces for testing. The mechatronic test benches allow for virtual test-drives including real components in real time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Optimized Production Software Development
The central challenges in production software development include the optimization of RAM resources, run time, and integration into the overall system. Furthermore, it must be possible to split the software in such a way that regular software updates are possible. And before the final software release, special validation and often a release process are required.
Development support from start to finish
Developing complex E/E systems and software with ever more safety-critical functions, especially in the area of autonomous systems, raises the question of guaranteeing function reliability. That's why dSPACE offers end-to-end expertise in functional safety, test strategy development as well as verification and validation in complex E/E processes - to support you from the earliest project stages to homologation.
dSPACE systems are easy to get up and running – however, if a project is more complex, if individual solutions are needed or if there is high time pressure, you can also trust dSPACE's fast, competent and reliable engineering services.