For electric vehicles, power electronics are critical for several functions, but perhaps most relevant of all is the traction inverter, which converts the DC power from a high-voltage (HV) battery into AC power to supply the traction drives of an electric vehicle. Today, different drive concepts like front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive, or even wheel hub motors are used. The focus of development is always on increasing performance and efficiency, which leads to new control approaches, drive concepts, power electronics devices (e.g., silicon carbide SiC), and motor types. The drive unit is used by different vehicle functions and has to be integrated into the vehicle network. This also makes the integration process and the development of interfaces more complex.
In addition, electric drive systems are also used in a wide range of other applications. Similar drive systems and control approaches with even more powerful motors are used in industrial applications as well as aircraft and railroad applications. And electric vehicles of today are equipped with numerous auxiliary drives in applications such as air conditioning, electromechanical power steering or electronic braking systems.
Compared to conventional engines, where the control unit only provides the control signals and the energy is generated by combustion, control units of electric drives must provide the complete actuation power. This results in special requirements for interfacing the development and test systems. In addition, electric systems are far more dynamic and therefore require significantly accelerated simulations. Since the electric drive is not only used for propulsion but also for braking through recuperation, this system is safety-critical and requires extensive testing during the development phase and successive validation of new software releases. This results in a wide range of test requirements. dSPACE systems support all stages during development, from rapid prototyping to code generation, SIL, HIL, and even power HIL simulation, always helping our customers enhance reliability, energy density, and efficiency. The following points are crucial for reaching these goals:
- Increased switching frequencies
- More advanced motor and power electronics topologies
- Increased controller performance and complexity
- Increased system voltages of more than 1,000 V
Our Solutions for Traction Motors
dSPACE offers comprehensive solutions for software-in-the-loop (SIL) testing, rapid prototyping, ECU autocoding as well as hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) and power HIL simulation. The portfolio includes powerful real-time processors, cutting-edge FPGA platforms, and comprehensive I/O interfaces. The dSPACE portfolio also offers ready-to-use FPGA-based model libraries for I/O processing and for controller or plant models. The dSPACE software supports the transition from function models in Simulink® to real-time processor and FPGA applications.
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.
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.