Automated Model Based Design Process To Evaluate Advanced Component Technologies


Automated Model Based Design Process to Evaluate

Advanced Component Technologies

R. Vijayagopal, N. Shidore, S. Halbach, L. Michaels, A. Rousseau

Argonne National Laboratory

Copyright © 2010 SAE International


To reduce development time and introduce technologies faster to the market, many companies have been turning more and more to Model Based Design. In Model Based Design, the development process centers around a system model, from requirements capture and design to implementation and test. Engineers can skip over a generation of system design processes on the basis of hand coding and use graphical models to design, analyze, and implement the software that determines machine performance and behavior. This paper describes the process implemented in Autonomie, a Plug-and-Play Software Environment, to design and evaluate component hardware in an emulated environment. We will discuss best practices and provide an example through evaluation of advanced high-energy battery pack within an emulated Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle.


Building hardware is expensive, time consuming, and severely limiting with respect to comprehending, and accounting for, variation in a system design. Traditional design paradigms in the automotive industry often delay control system design until late in the process, in some cases requiring several costly hardware iterations. To reduce costs and improve time to market, it is imperative that greater emphasis be placed on modeling and simulation early in the development process. This becomes more necessary as time goes on as a result of increasing vehicle complexity, more vehicle configurations, and larger groups of engineers working on projects, which complicates design choices. To fully realize the benefits of math-based design, the models created must be as flexible and reusable as possible.

Greater reliance on modeling and simulation does come at some cost. Even if institutional inertia can be overcome, new processes must be put in place to facilitate communication between the model creators and consumers and to handle an increase in the number of files, which can be quite significant and overwhelming.

Model management introduces a set of requirements that are quite similar to software management requirements. There is a need to maintain version control for the models, as well as to implement a system-level model assembly capability, comparable to the need to interface, compile, and link the code modules that comprise a complete software build. Project management requirements also exist, to ensure that all the files and data needed to create a complete simulation are organized, maintained, and provided as a complete package.

The Autonomie software [1,2] provides an integrated environment and set of processes for managing, interconnecting, and integrating dynamic models of vehicle components and subsystems, to build and execute complete system simulations. These simulations are then used for many different types of analyses, from trade-off studies of alternative propulsion system architectures to detailed control system design.

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