Automotive

// REVOLUTIONISING THE VEHICLE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS

rFpro offers the most accurate engineering-grade simulation environment for vehicle development. It enables engineers to rapidly scale testing, reduces the risk of late design changes and introduces subjective feedback early in the development process.

rFpro provides high-resolution digital twins of real public roads, OEM/Tier 1 test facilities and proving grounds, with road surfaces accurate to 1cm.  This degree of accuracy results in high levels of correlation, making virtual testing and validation through rFpro highly valuable.

Engineers and test drivers use rFpro to help with a wide variety of applications including:

  • Vehicle dynamics development and testing
  • Tyre modelling and testing
  • Headlight development and assessment
  • Perform human factors studies

DRIVER- IN-THE-LOOP

Using workstations, static simulators, or dynamic simulators, rFpro allows engineers to efficiently develop and test their solutions. rFpro also enables test drivers to enter the design process while the vehicle is still model-based. This means more of the changes resulting from the test and validation processes are made earlier in the engineering cycle, delivering significant cost savings. Testing virtually in rFpro exercises the vehicle and its systems with a human test driver to identify problems that might not have been revealed in automated tests. In some cases, the combined costs of sending a team to a test facility plus the facility hire charges mean that the rFpro system can pay for itself the first time a problem is identified, and fixed, that would otherwise have resulted in a wasted test.

Test your control systems

 rFpro enables the virtual testing and calibration of vehicle control systems, such as chassis, powertrain, driveline, smart headlights and ADAS features, very early in the engineering process. rFpro allows far more testing in extreme limit performance situations for vehicle dynamics testing, as well as for other dangerous test situations, such as ADAS crash avoidance testing and night-time headlight testing, without the need for expensive prototype cars, in safe, repeatable, controlled conditions.

Optimise Powertrain Systems

 AVL, a leading powertrain test and development company, estimates that using rFpro has saved the company 30% of its up-front costs on powertrain projects.

rFpro is used with HIL powertrain dynamometers to test and calibrate powertrain and engine control systems, saving time and money. All powertrain types including ICE, hybrid and full-electric can be developed and tested using rFpro.

The transition from deployment to regeneration in electric drivelines can be accurately replicated and evaluated in rFpro. It enables powertrain strategies to be developed and tested by human drivers while still at the model-based engineering stage. The road surface, such as bumps, slope and camber, is faithfully reproduced in rFpro’s Terrain Server. This enables longitudinal compliance, traction control, torque vectoring and other drivetrain and engine control systems to be calibrated and tested quickly at a reduced cost, in controlled, repeatable conditions.

Drive your chassis ahead of a physical prototype

 rFpro can be used to test passive and active chassis and steering systems before committing to a physical design. It enables the introduction of professional test drivers early into the development process to provide critical subjective data to thoroughly analyse design decisions and platform architectures.

Supply physically accurate road inputs to tyre models

 rFpro Terrain Server is a high-resolution, real-time road surface generator. It ensures that the model is fed accurate road surface data to ensure correlation with physical vehicle testing on your proving grounds, test facilities and public road routes, significantly improving testing correlation.

Putting repeatability and consistency back into RDE testing – A simulator equipped with rFpro enables a human driver to control a virtual vehicle to conduct RDE (Real Driving Emissions) tests with reproducible conditions, including accurately modelled weather and traffic. This enables engineers to achieve consistent and repeatable testing with natural and inconsistent driver input that simply isn’t possible in the real world. Understanding driver-influenced variables, such as poor throttle modulation when cruising, or failure to anticipate traffic slowing down ahead, will be central to optimising the calibration of the vehicle for RDE.

Software developed by rFpro for driver in the loop simulators creates a sufficiently high level of realism that drivers behave in a representative way, enabling the influence of driving habits on emissions to be quantified. This level of realism is achieved through the use of low latency, high-resolution graphics and finely detailed road surface models faithfully recreating cambers, gradients, bumps and potholes. Combined with a HIL powertrain dynamometer, it gives manufacturers the necessary confidence that a car’s virtual emissions performance will be equivalent to its ‘real world’ results.

Headlight development

rFpro supports high-definition headlight profiles using industry standard IES definitions and RGB definitions. This means highly accurate headlight evaluations can be performed using rFpro digital twin models, eliminating the constraint of night-time only testing.

 

ZKW, a headlight tier 1 supplier, uses rFpro to develop their next generation headlights.

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Perform human factors studies

 rFpro’s combination of an extensive and varied library of high-fidelity digital twin environments, coupled with a powerful Application Programming Interface (API), make it an ideal choice for Human Factors research. Virtual Reality and hand-tracking capabilities are already included, together with a ‘live surface’ feature enabling the efficient development and evaluation of Human Machine Interfaces (HMI), including Heads-up Displays (HUD). Multiple solutions can be employed to generate rich, precise, and diverse scenarios, utilising our large library of vehicles, pedestrians, and objects. A comprehensive datalogging facility can be further combined and augmented using the API to provide time-stamps of specific events and synchronisation with external physiological measurement equipment.

Browse our Digital Models section and explore a selection of highly-accurate models of some of the world’s most iconic locations and proving grounds.