Getting in gear for next generation cars

April 13, 2005

23 partners from across the European car industry worked together to develop a new software interface that will make the next generation of cars quicker to design and cheaper to bring to market while maintaining high quality standards.
As cars become increasingly complex, introducing new electronics becomes increasingly expensive and has an ever-lengthening development cycle. The problem is that when a new component is introduced not only must it be tested thoroughly, but so must all of the existing components to ensure none has been adversely affected.

Now 23 partners drawn from all areas of the European car industry have combined within the ITEA cluster project ITEA 00009 EAST EEA (Electronics Architecture and Software Technology - Embedded Electronic Architecture) to create a solution to this growing problem and give Europe a competitive edge in new car development.

"We set out to create a standard 'middleware' for cars that integrates all of the different electronic systems, sub-systems, modules and components delivered by different suppliers into the complete network of a vehicle system," explains Joseph Beretta of PSA Peugeot Citroen.

"The challenge is to efficiently manage the constantly increasing complexity of electronically controlled functions in today's and tomorrow's vehicles. The EAST-EEA architecture, its software engineering methods and their validation are essential for this advanced technology."

The project had three set aims - to create the standard "middleware", to define a high level language to make it accessible, and to develop specialist tools including test tools and demonstrators. In fact they have created a new software architecture that allows easier integration of new electronics in cars through "plug-and-play" technology, dramatically reducing development time and costs to market.

Guarantees quality

"It not only means that new systems such as new electronic steering systems are quicker to design and to market, it also guarantees a level of quality which is very important if European cars are to be competitive," says Beretta.

EAST EEA was a massive undertaking, occupying 250 person-years, a budget of 40 million Euros, and partners from four countries including car manufacturers, equipment suppliers and academic and research institutions. It was awarded the ITEA Achievement Award in 2004.

ITEA was established to create crucial middleware and prepare standards, laying the foundations for the next generation of products, systems and services. In the case of EAST EEA, the blueprint for a new generation of quality European cars has created

Although the project has now ended, the work continues. The results of EAST EEA are being used as the basis for the EU Framework 6 project EASIS and the car industry's AUTOSAR (AUTomotive Open System ARchitecture) initiative which is expected to produce its first results by 2010.

Source: EUREKA

Explore further: India's heritage city races to save icons from polluted ruin

Related Stories

'Godfather' of deep learning is reimagining AI

November 3, 2017

Geoffrey Hinton may be the "godfather" of deep learning, a suddenly hot field of artificial intelligence, or AI – but that doesn't mean he's resting on his algorithms.

When will you be ready to get in a driverless car?

August 25, 2017

We are really close to perfecting the technology for self-driving cars. But our driverless future won't go anywhere if people don't trust it. It's one thing for our autonomous test cars to take us for a drive with a safety ...

Recommended for you

Physicists design $100 handheld muon detector

November 20, 2017

At any given moment, the Earth's atmosphere is showered with high-energy cosmic rays that have been blasted from supernovae and other astrophysical phenomena far beyond the Solar System. When cosmic rays collide with the ...

The strange case of the scuba-diving fly

November 20, 2017

More than a century ago, American writer Mark Twain observed a curious phenomenon at Mono Lake, just to the east of Yosemite National Park: enormous numbers of small flies would crawl underwater to forage and lay eggs, but ...

Recurring martian streaks: flowing sand, not water?

November 20, 2017

Dark features on Mars previously considered evidence for subsurface flowing of water are interpreted by new research as granular flows, where grains of sand and dust slip downhill to make dark streaks, rather than the ground ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.