- 1 Introduction
- 1.1 VIM Controller
- 1.2 Drive By Wire Systems
- 1.3 Contact Us
New Eagle develops and supplies components to Autonomous Systems development. The most common offer is the Raptor line of controllers starting with the GCM196 as a Vehicle Interface Module (VIM), acting as a Drive By Wire (DBW) interface between the AI "Brain" and the vehicle or actuator system.
260MHz Infineon Tricore TC1793
3 CAN, 1 LIN
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Drive By Wire Systems
The New Eagle Pacifica Drive-by-wire kit is a complete solution for control of the vehicle actuation systems include throttle, braking and steering. The system uses the GCM-196 VIM to interface with the vehicles systems. A computer running the ROS framework along with specially designed nodes communicate with the VIM to provide control commands. For testing of the by-wire system a game controller can be used.
New Eagle provides its ROS libraries at http://wiki.ros.org/pacifica_dbw to help developers create their own application.
Throttle control is achieved by intercepting and emulating the signal from the existing throttle pedal on the vehicle using New Eagle's Pedal Emulator module. This method requiring NO additional actuators on the pedal itself and minimizes the latency for control. The system can respond faster than any human due to its 200 Hz control loop. The Pedal Emulator module passes through the driver's pedal input, until activated by the DBW control module. This ensures that accelerator pedal control is always returned to the driver in the event of a fault or emergency stop input.
Steering control is achieved by interacting with the system’s existing electronic power steering module, requiring NO additional actuators and minimizing the latency for control. Controlling the OEM power steering system makes for a clean interface, simple installation process, and leverages qualified automotive-grade parts to eliminate safety concerns.
Braking control is achieved by intercepting and emulating the PWM signal from the existing brake pedal on the vehicle, requiring NO additional actuators and minimizing the latency for control. This system leverages both the on-board regen as part of the HEV system and the ABS braking system. In the DBW control software, the emergency stop button & fault actions can be configured to either switch brake control back to the OEM pedal input (if a safety driver is present) or apply the brakes and bring the vehicle to a stop (if no safety driver is present). This makes New Eagle's DBW kit suitable for any level of autonomy.
Shift control is achieved by intercepting signals from the existing electronic shift actuator to move between Park, Reverse, Neutral, and Drive modes. New Eagle's DBW system can be customized to work with either CAN-based or hardwired electronic shift modules.
Body Control & Sensors
New Eagle's DBW system can also interface with several additional vehicle actuators. On the Pacifica, it can control the following OEM actuators via CAN:
- Turn signals/hazards
- High beam headlights
- Sliding doors & power liftgate.
On other vehicles, New Eagle can customize the DBW system to control these actuators, either via CAN reverse engineering or via connecting DBW VCU outputs directly to the OEM wiring harness.
The Pacifica DBW system can also read data from the following OEM sensors via CAN:
- Wheel speed sensors (with tooth counters)
- 2-axis accelerometer
- Cruise control buttons
- Seatbelt status
- Airbag status
- Door status
- Fuel level
- Ultrasonic park sensors
- Tire pressure
- GPS (optional)
- Adaptive cruise radar (optional).
On other vehicles, New Eagle can customize the DBW system to read these signals, either via CAN reverse engineering or via connecting DBW VCU inputs directly to the OEM wiring harness.
Safety & Reliability
Safety and reliability are critical when doing development for on-the-road vehicles. New Eagle’s drive-by-wire kit was designed with this at the forefront. The kit uses automotive-grade production controllers that ensure high levels of reliability and are deterministic which is key for safety critical applications. The system includes the following safety features:
- Firmware Speed Limits that ensure safe operation during development
- Controllers bring the vehicle to a safe stop if any of the following criteria are met: Loss of heartbeat from AI system Collision warnings from existing on-board sensors Fault Detection from vehicle diagnostics
- Automotive-Grade Rugged Hardware (IP68, up to 100°C) that can withstand harsh environmental conditions
- Driver Detection disables the DBW system if the driver actuates the steering wheel, brake pedal, accelerator pedal, or gear shift knob.
The optional safety features are:
- Redundant VCU controllers that work in coordination to bring vehicle to a safe stop if there is a checksum disagreement between them
- Trajectory Buffer that allows vehicle to follow last known safe route while bringing vehicle to a safe stop
- Redundant Brake Controls that ensure vehicle will stop in emergency situations
Mounting & Packaging
The DBW kit hardware is scalable and can be designed to fit in the rear storage compartment of the vehicle (if it exists). It is based on a rack-mount design and bolts directly to the floor. The top tray encloses the rack and allows for the driver to continue to use the rear of the vehicle for cargo storage. The rack includes extra space for mounting additional autonomous hardware. An example AI computer is shown in the figure below, which can be replaced with a different form factor if needed.
Power & Thermal Management
The power system is scalable and can be configured to match your sensor and computing needs. The OEM 12V charging system can spare up to 1000W of continuous power for autonomous computing hardware. New Eagle also recommends a 2nd lead acid battery to stabilize the system under peak vehicle electrical loads. The DBW mounting rack also has space reserved for an optional pure sinewave inverter capable of outputting 500W continuous and 2KW peak output to power 110V AC systems. The power system might also include CAN-based relay control modules as shown in the system architecture diagram (Figure 1) that allow control of 10 channels each with a maximum of 20 amps for a total of 1KW of maximum power output.
The mounting rack also has space reserved for a liquid-to-air heat exchanger, if desired. This heat exchanger can reject heat from most power electronic systems without the need for a fan, making the system very quiet.
Please discuss your power system needs with the New Eagle team
Take advantage of the Raptor Ecosystem when developing your autonomous system on the Polaris GEM platform. Contact our sales team to discuss how New Eagle can help.
To learn how to apply the GCM196 as a VIM or for questions or more information, please contact [email protected]. Please check back often as we are adding more autonomous stuff to our offering.