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Modular real-time system

The modular dSPACE SCALEXIO system can be used for hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) and rapid control prototyping (RCP) applications. It is highly scalable, provides high-performance processor technology for demanding real-time requirements as well as comprehensive, precise, and fast I/O capabilities. SCALEXIO systems are configured in dSPACE ConfigurationDesk.

  • DS6342 CAN Board

    New SCALEXIO I/O board with high channel density for CAN bus systems

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  • DS6121 Multi-I/O Board

    New SCALEXIO I/O board for dynamic electric drive and power electronics control applications

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  • DS6321 UART Board

    New SCALEXIO I/O board for connecting simulators to external devices with serial interfaces like RS232, RS422, RS485, and K-line

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  • Flexible function tests

    A small, variable, custom hardware-in-the-loop simulator would be ideal to quickly test a new function or controller. This is exactly what the new SCALEXIO LabBox from dSPACE offers.

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  • Success in Action

    Launched two years ago, the SCALEXIO hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) test systems from dSPACE have already proven their value in numerous customer projects. They are now being used across the globe, in countries such as China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the USA.

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  • Five years of SCALEXIO – Looking back and to the future

    In 2011, SCALEXIO was introduced as the new dSPACE hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) system. Tino Schulze, responsible for HIL test systems at dSPACE explains the past development and the plans for the future.

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  • Save Test Systems for Test Executions – Perform the Test Evaluation Elsewhere

    In this free webinar, dSPACE presents SYNECT and its functionalities for automating test execution, test system preparation as well as available mechanisms to separate the test evaluation from the test execution.

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  • Universal Real-Time Platform

    Published: dSPACE Magazine 2/2017, Dec 2017
    Function developers of mechatronic systems from a wide range of industries are now entering the SCALEXIO era. Frank Mertens, lead product manager for rapid prototyping systems at dSPACE, explains what this is all about. 

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Application Areas

The dSPACE SCALEXIO product line comprises highly flexible and modular systems in various form factors for hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) and rapid control prototyping (RCP) applications for various industries such as automotive, automation, aerospace, medical, transportation, or research. Its powerful real-time technology and comprehensive bus support are ideally suited for the demanding applications of today and tomorrow, which include assisted, highly automated, and autonomous driving, electromobility, and increasing network communication. 

Key Benefits

  • Scalable to any required processing and I/O requirements
  • For laboratory as well as in-vehicle applications
  • High-performance processor technology for fast calculation of large and complex simulation models
  • Comprehensive, precise, and fast I/O capabilities based on FPGA technology
  • IOCNET real-time backbone with low jitter and high bandwidth for best-in-class closed-loop performance
  • Use of several third-party simulation environments via Functional Mock-up Interface (FMI) support

SCALEXIO provides two types of real-time processing platforms:

  • The SCALEXIO Processing Unit is based on an industrial PC that can be used within a SCALEXIO Rack System or as a stand-alone desktop version. It is suited for applications with high computation performance requirements.
  • The SCALEXIO DS6001 Processor Board is a compact real-time platform and can be integrated directly in a SCALEXIO LabBox or a SCALEXIO AutoBox. The DS6001 is suited for applications that require fast closed-loop rates or high I/O bandwidth.

Both real-time platforms provide a high bandwidth Ethernet host interface and IOCNET interfaces for I/O extension or multiprocessor coupling. They also have an angular processing unit (APU) functionality for highly precise angle-based I/O simulation, e.g., injection and ignition signals. With these real-time platforms, up to six independent APUs can be used per SCALEXIO processing hardware.

Multicore Support for Large Models

Depending on the processor, large, complex simulation models can be distributed across several processor cores to ensure that they are computed in real time. A configuration software is used to distribute model parts to the cores and to configure the communication behavior, the simulation hardware, and the model connections.

Multiprocessor Support for Large Systems

Multiprocessor support means that several SCALEXIO systems can be interconnected to increase computational power. To provide large bandwidths, SCALEXIO processing hardware can be interconnected via IOCNET. You can use ConfigurationDesk to conveniently model a system.

Host Interface

Communication with the host PC is carried out via Gigabit Ethernet, so the SCALEXIO system can be used in any company network. When more than two processing hardware components are used in combination with a single host PC, they are interconnected via an Ethernet switch to ensure communication. The IP address for the connection can be assigned via a DHCP server or stored on the SCALEXIO system itself.

  SCALEXIO Processing Unit DS6001 Processor Board


  • 19'' stand-alone desktop version or rack-mount version for the SCALEXIO off-the-shelf rack system
  • 2-slot plug-in card for SCALEXIO LabBox or SCALEXIO AutoBox

I/O support

  • SCALEXIO I/O boards
  • MultiCompact
  • HighFlex
  • SCALEXIO I/O boards

FIU support

  • Yes
  • No

SCALEXIO offers three types of I/O boards. All the SCALEXIO I/O hardware shares the following characteristics:

  • Task-synchronous signal preprocessing on I/O boards to take some of the load off the real-time processor to ensure highest real-time performance of the SCALEXIO systems
  • Connection to the processing unit via an IOCNET interface
  • Fully software-configurable
  • Easy installation and configuration processes, so very little training effort is necessary

Topic SCALEXIO I/O Boards1) MultiCompact HighFlex
  • Large number of I/O channels with dedicated channel types
  • Small board size
  • Connection to I/O via Sub-D connector2)
  • Boards are slot-independent 2) and easy to plug in
  • Large number of I/O channels for specific applications
  • Each channel has a dedicated channel type, so the costs per channel are low
  • Integrated signal conditioning and converters
  • Onboard Failure Insertion Unit (FIU)
  • Connection of real and substitute loads possible
  • Universal input/output channels with freely assignable channel types
  • Specific bus channels for all bus communication
  • Very versatile and finely scalable with 10 channels per I/O board, 4 channels per bus board
  • Galvanic isolation for each individual channel
  • Integrated signal conditioning and converters
  • Onboard Failure Insertion Unit (FIU)
  • Connection of real and substitute loads possible
  • Standardized connector concept for all boards
  • Boards are slot-independent and easy to assemble.
Can be used in



1) No onboard Failure Insertion Unit (FIU), no connection of real or substitute loads.

2) Does not apply to DS633x boards.



The SCALEXIO AutoBox brings the power of SCALEXIO into vehicles such as passenger cars, trucks, trains, and agricultural as well as construction machinery. Optimized for in-vehicle use, it is ideal for test drives when developing components such as electric powertrains and chassis control as well as functions for assisted, highly automated, and autonomous driving.


As a laboratory system, the SCALEXIO LabBox is ideally suited for a wide range of applications, such as RCP, function testing, test bench control, and as a base system for customized HIL setups. The compact chassis fits on an office desk and offers space for up to 18 SCALEXIO I/O boards, which you can easily exchange in order to adapt the real-time system to various applications.

SCALEXIO Rack System

For ECU tests, the SCALEXIO off-the-shelf rack systems provide sufficient space for MultiCompact I/O units, HighFlex boards, and SCALEXIO I/O boards. The SCALEXIO off-the-shelf system for HIL applications comes in variants with 9 height units (U) and 12 U and is ideal for testing single ECUs.

SCALEXIO Customized Rack System

The customized SCALEXIO simulator is tailored to customer-specific requirements. It provides maximum flexibility and can be expanded easily. Its typical fields of application include complex tests of networked ECUs as well as tests that include electronic loads and complete virtual vehicles.

Test Benches

dSPACE offers highly dynamic test benches for testing complex mechatronic systems. To achieve a realistic behavior of the components to be tested, the test bench uses real parts, such as an electric motor or mechanical loads. For motor controllers and power electronics control units for non-rotating applications, dSPACE also offers turn-key projects using electronic load modules that provide high voltages and hundreds of kVA.

SCALEXIO Processing Unit Product lines for high core performance and high parallel performance ConfigurationDesk Configuration and implementation software for dSPACE real-time hardware DS6001 Processor Board High-performance processor board for SCALEXIO LabBox DS6101 Multi-I/O Board SCALEXIO I/O board with signal conditioning for automotive systems DS6121 Multi-I/O Board SCALEXIO I/O board for electric drive and power electronics control applications DS6201 Digital I/O Board SCALEXIO I/O board with 96 bidirectional digital I/O channels DS6202 Digital I/O Board SCALEXIO I/O board for generating and capturing digital signals DS6221 A/D Board Fast SCALEXIO A/D Board for precise measurements DS6241 D/A Board Multi-channel D/A board DS6601/DS6602 FPGA Base Boards High-performance FPGA boards with the latest Xilinx® FPGA technology for advanced electromobility applications DS2655 FPGA Base Board SCALEXIO I/O board with user-programmable FPGA DS6301 CAN/LIN Board SCALEXIO I/O board for connecting simulators to CAN/CAN FD and LIN bus systems DS6311 FlexRay Board SCALEXIO I/O board for connecting simulators to FlexRay bus systems DS6321 UART Board SCALEXIO I/O board for connecting simulators to external devices with serial interfaces DS6331-PE Ethernet Board The DS6331 provides additional Ethernet ports for the SCALEXIO Processing Unit DS6341 CAN Board SCALEXIO I/O board for connecting simulators to CAN bus systems DS6342 CAN Board SCALEXIO I/O board with high channel density for CAN/CAN FD bus systems DS6351 LIN Board SCALEXIO I/O board for connecting simulators to LIN bus systems DS2601 Signal Measurement Board HighFlex board for measuring ECU output signals DS2621 Signal Generation Board HighFlex board for simulating ECU input signals DS2642 FIU & Power Switch Board HighFlex board for power-switching with Failure Insertion Unit DS2671 Bus Board HighFlex board for connecting to different bus systems DS2680 I/O Unit SCALEXIO MultiCompact unit for powertrain and vehicle dynamics scenarios DS2690 Digital I/O Board MultiCompact I/O board for vehicle body scenarios DS2907 Battery Simulation Controller SCALEXIO power supply control for battery simulation DS6651 Multi-I/O Module SCALEXIO FPGA I/O expansion for developing and testing highly dynamic control applications Electrical Power Systems Simulation Package Easy real-time simulation of power electronics circuits developed with Simscape Electrical™ (Specialized Power Systems) EMH Solution for SCALEXIO Processor based simulation of electric drives SCALEXIO Interface Solution for ARINC 429 The SCALEXIO Interface Solution for ARINC 429 enables the connection of a dSPACE real-time system to an ARINC 429 network. SCALEXIO Interface Solution for ARINC 664 and AFDX® Enables the connection of a dSPACE real-time system to an ARINC 664 or AFDX® network SCALEXIO Interface Solution for MIL-STD-1553 Enables the connection of a dSPACE real-time system to an MIL-STD-1553 network SCALEXIO Serial Interface Solution Using Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI) and Inter-Integrated Circuit (I2C) bus SCALEXIO TWINsync Solution Synchronous load motor control for test benches with dSPACE SCALEXIO SCALEXIO AutoBox A powerful modular real-time system for in-vehicle use SCALEXIO LabBox A compact modular real-time system SCALEXIO Rack System The SCALEXIO off-the-shelf HIL simulators are available with up to 12 height units. SCALEXIO Customized Rack System The SCALEXIO customized rack system comprises a modular simulator concept. SCALEXIO Fieldbus Solution Connecting a SCALEXIO system to various fieldbus types ControlDesk Universal experiment software for ECU development MotionDesk 3-D online animation of simulated mechanical systems in real time, e.g., for visualizing ADAS or vehicle dynamics scenarios Automotive Simulation Models Tool suite for simulating the engine, vehicle dynamics, electrical system, and traffic environment AutomationDesk Powerful test authoring and automation tool for HIL testing of ECUs SYNECT Data management and collaboration software with a focus on model-based development and ECU SCALEXIO Ethernet Boards Additional Ethernet ports for SCALEXIO Processing Unit and SCALEXIO LabBox Bus Manager Configuration tool for LIN, CAN, and CAN FD bus simulation
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