This increased functionality of vehicles, which is the aim of 3Car – and, by the way, practically the entire automotive industry -, requires a new system approach in vehicle architecture to support electromobility and highly automated driving. In 2014, when 3Car launched its activities, cars already contained between 70 and 100 networked ECUs. Driven by growing demands for comfort, functionality, efficiency, safety and environmental compatibility from OEMs and their customers, this number has increased further in the meantime. The European project "Integrated Components for Complexity Control” (3Ccar), has stood up to this challenge. 48 partners from 14 countries have developed novel highly integrated semiconductor-based solutions.
The primary goal of the project was to reduce complexity and simultaneously increase the reliability of electric and autonomous vehicles. To this end, 3Ccar has developed a new system approach in vehicle architecture: The vehicle architecture will be reorganized in so-called vehicle domains. They enable functional and task-oriented coordination. This reduces complexity despite increasing requirements, greatly easing the development of electric, autonomous vehicles.
The vehicle architecture
The individual control units are integrated into the corresponding domains. Functionalities such as steering, braking and drive are coordinated from there. A few powerful domain controllers are introduced for this purpose. These are based on multicore automotive processors and heterogeneous SoCs. For example, the conventional powertrain becomes a domain. Fewer, but more highly integrated ECUs not only make complexity controllable, but also increase robustness.