A Spanish multinational corporation that has been operating for decades in the automotive sector. They are a global provider of vision, safety and connectivity systems, committed to technological innovation and research.

The challenge

The company’s testing department had been performing several tests on the TCU (Telematic Control Unit) software. To collect all the necessary data for the test, they connected the software to the hardware part of the TCU – the set-up alone could thus sometimes take a number of days. Access to the hardware was also not always guaranteed and caused several delays, so simultaneous testing was often not possible. Under these conditions, the release of software updates could take several weeks.

The solution

We were hired to plan a general strategy to speed up the testing process. We proactively decided to create a digital twin of the hardware part of the TCU, as the hardware dependency was the most time-consuming factor and the main cause of delays. The TCU is a small computer the size and weight of a book, which collects all the data from the electronic systems in the vehicle, interprets them and communicates information to the driver as necessary. We built a framework environment that emulates everything a TCU should do: collecting data from rear-view sensors, from the accelerometer and from the temperature sensor, tracking the vehicle position through GPS, giving input to the user interface or triggering eCall systems to alert emergency services. Having a digital twin that can simulate all the possible and actual conditions of the TCU has been a real milestone. The digital twin strategy reduced the company’s testing time from days to hours. Multiple tests can also now be performed simultaneously. The project started in 2017 and it is now successfully closed.