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2017 2nd IEEE International Conference On Recent Trends in Electronics Information & Communication Technology (RTEICT), May 19-20,

2017, India

A strategy and framework for analysis of


operational data of automotive radars for
development of Active Safety systems
Manu Vyas Sarath H Smitha K Bagubali A
PG Student, SENSE, VIT Software Engineer, Active Safety, Radar Systems Engineer, Active Safety, Assistant Professor,
University,Vellore Delphi Technical Center India, Delphi Technical Center India, SENSE, VIT
manuvyas710@gmail.com Bangalore Bangalore University,Vellore
sarath.h@delphi.com Smitha.Chandrasekhar@delphi.com bagubali@vit.ac.in

Abstract – With the introduction of radars in the automotive The software consists of components like the bootloader
domain, the automobile, as a product, has evolved greatly. code, power-on-self-test (POST) code, sanity and integrity
Modern automobiles are highly advanced. Part of this checking codes and the main application code.
advancement are the Active Safety (AS) systems and Advanced
Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). These systems work byiii. The environment –
gathering information about the vehicle’s surroundings and The environment is what the embedded components will
processing them at a high speed. The main component of such interact with. This will consists of components like
systems is the automotive radar. Development of such systems temperature, vibration, humidity, dust, objects on the road,
poses a formidable challenge due to the complexity of the other vehicles, user inputs etc.
technical design and engineering involved; influenced by Embedded Components in an automotive system –
stringent quality assurance, reliability and safety standards. The working of the embedded
components(hardware and software) in question can be
With the aim to alleviate some burden of development and
improve the time-to-market, the following paper presents a
summarized in the following 3 steps –
strategy and a framework to analyze operational data from
i. Data acquisition (input)
automotive radars. The paper illustrates the details of the
approach in Hardware-in-the-loop (HIL), Software-in-the-loop ii. Processing
(SIL) and real-world environments, while comparing with the iii. Generating the result (output)
conventional strategy. The paper enlists the advantages and
disadvantages of using this approach. It also suggests methods This may or may not be a cyclic looping process and may or
to increase the speed of analysis. may not feature a feedback mechanism. Generally the
outputs are stored to a memory for later reference.
Keywords— Embedded systems, Automotive embedded
systems, Automotive technology, Automotive Radars, V-Cycle,
Radar Analysis, Simulation, Re-simulation.
I. INTRODUCTION
The modern automobile is essentially a large system
containing a collection of interacting sub-systems. Each of
these sub-systems performs a certain task and makes its
Fig 1. An Embedded System
contribution to the overall working of the automobile.
Therefore when we consider the task of development of any There is a specific requirement in the automotive domain:
such system, we employ the ‘Systems Approach’[1][3]. the embedded components in question are almost certainly
With regard to automobiles, most embedded systems required to work in real-time. This poses a significant
contain the following components[1][2][3][5]– challenge. In order to meet this requirement, the components
i. The embedded hardware - need to be engineered in such a way that the act of
The hardware consists of various components like the processing the information takes the minimum time[3].
Electronic Control Unit (ECU),memory, sensors, actuators,
Optimization can be done on all fronts of the embedded
feedback loops, loads and wiring.
components. For example - Optimization of hardware
ii. The embedded software –
would refer to solutions that reduce signal propagation delay

978-1-5090-3704-9/17/$31.00 © 2017 IEEE


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2017 2nd IEEE International Conference On Recent Trends in Electronics Information & Communication Technology (RTEICT), May 19-20, 2017, India

and higher-capacity physical layer standards. Optimization ‘V’ cycle method[7][8] and can be described with the
of software would refer to solutions that improve memory following figure –
usage and/or generate results more quickly i.e. a lower
process turnaround time.

II. LITERATURE REVIEW

A. Active safety and advanced driver assistance systems


in automobiles –
In order to increase the safety and convenience of
those inside the vehicle as well as those outside the vehicles
in some cases, AS and ADAS systems have been developed. Fig 4. The ‘V’ cycle
These systems utilize the aforementioned embedded
components to perform certain functions. Most modern The challenge in development comes in various stages of
vehicles can be installed with cameras and radars. A the V cycle. The developers need to meet the requirements
schematic is shown in the following figure. of the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) on a wide
range of aspects. In a nutshell, the developers need to create
features that are consistently reliable, accurate and precise in
their working.

There are many faults which can occur in an ADAS. There


may be failures in hardware and software components. For
example in the domain of sensors, the image sensor of the
camera can generate issues like dead-pixels. Deformities in
the antenna or vibrations can distort a radar’s beam. The
algorithms of the ADAS features can generate erroneous
results. On the other hand, in the domain of actuators, the
Fig 2. A modern automobile with radars and cameras AEB actuator may not recognize a trigger and fail to brake
the car. Then there are more general faults such as breaking
Cameras and radars are advanced sensors which can of the electrical connections of the ECUs to the Vehicle
generate a lot of information. By combining their Communication Bus or electromagnetic interference.
information through a process called ‘Sensor fusion’[4], it is The conventional strategy has been described in detail in the
possible to create many ADAS features. work of Skruch et al. [5]. The proposed strategy is based on
this reference and builds upon the same.
In this paper, the proposed strategy can be used to analyze
and test a wide range of faults. The focus shall be on
embedded software for radars.
III. DISCUSSION

This segment is organized as follows : First, the


conventional strategy and framework of analysis are
described. Then the disadvantages of the same are listed.
Subsequently, the proposed strategy and framework are
Fig 3. Sensor Fusion described, followed by the advantages (over the
conventional method) and disadvantages. For understanding
Some common ADAS features[5] are Adaptive Cruise purposes, we use the following terms which designate the
Control (ACC), Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB), common steps in the two methods –
Collision Warning (CW), Lane Departure Warning (LDW),
Lane Keep Aid (LKA), Blind Spot Information System A. Data Collection
(BLIS) etc.
B. Data Storage
B. Challenge in developing AS and ADAS features – C. Re-Simulation of Data and Comparative Analysis
D. Reporting
The development of such features requires a lot of
resources. The general flow of development is based on the We also use the following terms –
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2017 2nd IEEE International Conference On Recent Trends in Electronics Information & Communication Technology (RTEICT), May 19-20, 2017, India

Local computer : A computer connected to the car which is A simulated environment for the implemented-
usually used to create data logs. algorithms is created a test-bench computer usually set-up in
Test bench : A computer placed in the office which is used the office; based on the idea of software-in-the-loop (SIL)
to perform testing on test-algorithms and data logs.
testing. Modified copies of the implemented-algorithms are
Implemented-algorithm: Algorithm which runs on
embedded hardware (ECU). made run on the test-bench. We will call these test-
Test-algorithm: Algorithm which run on a test bench or a algorithms. The collected data logs are retrieved from the
local computer. repository and fed to the SIL. The SIL extracts the raw radar
data from the data log and feeds it into the test-algorithms.
1. Conventional strategy and framework – The test-algorithms generate their outputs, just like the
A. Data Collection – implemented-algorithms. The outputs of the test-algorithm
are recorded. All data is logged again, essentially creating a
The radar generates a lot of data based on what it ‘sees’.
‘re-simulated’ copy of the input log.
This data is fed to implemented-algorithms of the ADAS
features (running in the ECU). They generate responses for Once this is done, both sets of logs are analyzed using tools
the actuators correspondingly. A local computer is which help visualize the information stored within the logs.
connected to the system. Using specialized software on that However, such tools are confined to data representation; not
computer, it is possible to capture all of the raw radar data, analysis. Most of the analysis is performed manually by
implemented-algorithms’ outputs and a lot of other comparing the data logs.
information related to the vehicle into ‘data logs’. It is
important to note that due to enormous amount of data being D. Reporting -
logged, the size of the logs can become very large very
quickly. The data logging software can divide the data logs By doing manual comparisons, the developers create
into segments to enable easier handling rather than a reports and save them for future references. Based on the
singular ungainly data log. The data logs can be replayed on reports, the developers make changes in the test-algorithms
the data logging software as well and test them again. Once they are satisfied with the results,
they put these algorithms into the vehicle and perform real-
The actual process of creating data logs can be based on[5] - world tests. Eventually, a test-algorithm becomes an
implemented-algorithm and the cycle repeats.
1. Real-world Data Acquisition -
Such data is acquired by performing real-world
tests such as test drives/road tests in controlled
environments (test tracks) and uncontrolled
environments (public roads and highways as well
as well as off-road).
2. Virtual Data Acquisition –
Such data is acquired by performing hardware-in-
the-loop (HIL) simulations on a test bench.

Real-world data is representative of the interaction of the


embedded software with the environment while virtual data
can be used to perform tests on specific features and to
simulate those conditions which are harder to simulate in the
real-world.
Fig 5. The Workflow in the conventional method.
B. Data Storage -

The data is stored in a secondary storage device such as


a hard drive on the local computer or on a server. This data Disadvantages of conventional method –
repository can be used to store and retrieve data logs as per
1. Time consumption and manual effort -
requirement.
This method is time consuming. Usually it takes
C. Re-Simulation of Data and Comparative Analysis long time to for the developers to test the data logs and
obtain the results of their interest. Then, it takes time to
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2017 2nd IEEE International Conference On Recent Trends in Electronics Information & Communication Technology (RTEICT), May 19-20, 2017, India

make the changes to the algorithms, apply them to the


vehicle, and do the whole cycle of testing again. The
manual effort involved in this method is large. Data
logs contain a huge amount of information and to
analyze it, a lot of effort is needed. All this increases the
time-to-market.
2. Chances of missing difficult-to-spot issues –
Since the analysis is manually done, the chances of
missing a difficult-to-spot issue are high. Sometimes
the data is there but due to unintuitive representation,
issues are missed. In the long process of development,
such misses can create a snowball effect and later lead
Fig 6. Data logs
to bigger issues.
Both sets of logs are then passed onto the Comparative
2. Proposed strategy and framework – Analysis code, which also runs on the local computer. This
code extracts the raw radar data and performs comparisons
In the proposed method, we propose the following
based on the outputs generated by the implemented-
changes in the corresponding steps in the workflow of the
algorithms and test-algorithms. The analysis code takes a
conventional method -
sample from the raw radar data and for that sample, finds
A. Data Collection - No modifications. the corresponding responses of the implemented-algorithm
and test-algorithm respectively. Then it generates reports
B. Data Storage - highlighting the differences between the two responses. The
code can be modified to test for specific cases and
In the proposed strategy, it is assumed that the radar conditions as well.
data is being segmented every five minutes. The current
segment resides in the analysis framework while it is being The comparative analysis code performs analysis using two
analyzed and then passed onto the server as a fresh five- types of methodologies –
minute segment arrives.
1. Direct comparison of outputs of the two algorithms and
C. Re-Simulation of Data and Comparative Analysis - reporting the differences.
2. Performing mathematical operations on the outputs of
As previously explained, the local computer used in the the two algorithms and finding out the correlation.
conventional method, is used for collection of data logs. A Multi-variable normalized Euclidean distance
separate test-bench is later used to analyze the data logs in correlation method is one common method. Using this,
the SIL environment, at a later time. Here is where we the differences between the outputs are even more
propose a change. We shift most of the SIL and analysis intuitively understood. Ideally, the developers would
workload onto the local computer. want the outputs to be highly correlated to the OEM’s
specifications.
On the local computer, which is being used to create the
data logs, we also set-up the SIL environment. The current D. Reporting -
five-minute log segment is fed into the SIL which contains
the test-algorithms. All data is logged again, now essentially The reports generated for every set of five minute log
creating a re-simulated copy of the current five-minute log segments are stored along with the logs themselves. The in-
segment. So now, the local computer will be holding onto – car hotspot is used to create a connection to the server using
the cellular network to send the data logs and reports.
1. The responses of the implemented-algorithms.
2. The responses of the test-algorithms. The developers can use the report to quickly identify the
highlights which have been observed and make further
modifications to the test-algorithms until satisfactory results
are achieved.
For example, suppose the algorithm for ACC needs to be
analyzed. All feature function algorithms require some
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2017 2nd IEEE International Conference On Recent Trends in Electronics Information & Communication Technology (RTEICT), May 19-20, 2017, India

calibrations. Suppose that the implemented-algorithm is The biggest benefit of this method is the ability to
working on a set of calibrations which are giving some compare and analyze algorithms and data in real-time.
unsatisfactory results when compared to the OEM The results and reports are created the instant the data
requirements. In an attempt to achieve better results, the
is processed. This can give a very ‘hands-on’ feel to the
developers change the calibrations to different values which
they believe should produce more acceptable outputs, and whole process of development.
load them in the test-algorithm. Then using the analysis 2. Reduced time consumption and manual effort –
framework, it can be measured in real-time, if the test- Both time and effort are saved in this method. This
algorithm has yielded any improvements over the currently will reduce the length of the development cycle and
implemented-algorithm. also increase productivity.
3. Identifying difficult-to-spot issues –
The schematic of the framework and the workflow is given
The reports generated by this method are intuitive
in the following figures –
and easy to understand. This will enable developers to
quickly zero-down on issues and solve them.
Disadvantages of proposed method –
1. Securing the connection to the server –
Since we use the in-car hotspot and cellular
network to connect to the server, the connection needs
to be encrypted in order to protect the data logs and
reports.
2. Need for more processing power –
The local computer needs to have a large amount
of processing capacity to be able to run the data logging
software along with the resimulation and comparative
analysis code.
Fig 7. Schematic Diagram
V. FUTURE SCOPE

Certain modifications and additions can be done to the


suggested framework in order to increase the performance.

1. Use of multicore processors and multithreaded code


design in the ECU as well as the local computer to
increase speed of analysis[6].
2. Use of loop parallelization techniques in the code to
increase processor clock utilization[6].
3. Supplying the raw radar data to the implemented-
algorithm and test-algorithm directly and comparing the
outputs. This would by-pass the need to generate data
logs, first for the implemented-algorithm and then again
for the test-algorithm.

VI. CONCLUSION

Development of Active Safety systems is an arduous


process which requires resources. The current strategy for
Fig 8. Workflow in the proposed method development bears scope for modifications and
improvements. In this paper, we have proposed a strategy
IV. RESULTS which can yield benefits on many fronts if implemented. By
using this method, the developers can iterate through the
Advantages of proposed method –
development cycle more quickly, thereby arriving at better
1. Real-time analysis of algorithms – results faster than by using the conventional strategy. This

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2017 2nd IEEE International Conference On Recent Trends in Electronics Information & Communication Technology (RTEICT), May 19-20, 2017, India

strategy will also reduce the time-to-market of the ADAS


features and reduce development costs while increasing
revenues. The developers can benefit from the holistic
nature of the proposed strategy.

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