Advantages of the Frontloading Process in Developing ECU Diagnostics

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Diagnostic functionality is typically implemented very late in the development cycle of an Electronic Control Unit (ECU). Suitably configured diagnostic test systems are usually not available until shortly before production startup. An informal never-ending requirements phase further aggrivates this situation. The solution of Stuttgart-based Vector Informatik GmbH: (1) Formalize Requirements Management and fill in the gaps between the customer specification and the requirements specification with the help of OEM-specific templates; and (2) implement diagnostic requirements in a XML database. With this approach (Frontloading) the total effort required to implement the diagnostic protocol can be reduced by a factor of 6 to 7. This creates in a win-win situation for both suppliers and OEMs.

Published in EPN automotive electronics, May 2005

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