FSD is making a significant contribution to managing the electronification of vehicles and road traffic, which continues to progress at an explosive pace, and thus finding a sensible balance between technical progress and risk control. They do so by developing innovative testing technologies to detect malfunctions, wear, ageing and tampering in vehicle components and systems. A key aspect here is the provision of the vehicle-inspection adapters for use in testing by the technical inspection authorities. The availability of vehicle description information is a necessity to ensure interoperability with different vehicles from the many vehicle manufacturers. This is accomplished with ODX files – an XML-based industry standard for exchanging vehicle diagnostics data.
All vehicle manufacturers are obligated to provide the data required for the interface description to FSD. However, no standardized data exchange format has been specified for this. Consequently, every manufacturer delivers their own data formats and structures. In order to create the ODX files for the vehicles, FSD must extract, aggregate, and convert the required information from this supplied source data. This was a manual process in the past. With the increasing complexity of vehicles and the multitude of new models and suppliers on the market, the amount and complexity of the source data to be processed has also increased. Continuation of the previous approach of manual conversion thus became impossible for reasons of cost and time.
The Avantgarde Labs solution
The first step was to import the source files from the suppliers. Due to the differing data formats used by the manufacturers, interfaces to formats such as XML, XSLX, C-Code and others had to be implemented. To convert the manufacturer data to ODX, complex decision trees for the mapping rules were created in cooperation with the FSD vehicle testers.
Quality assurance for the mappings was accomplished by means of end-to-end testing. This was essential in order to ensure the flawless functionality of the test equipment. Specifically, the vehicle-inspection adapters were supplied with the ODX files and tested under real conditions in FSD’s laboratories. This allowed any errors in the mapping schemes to be detected and corrected at an early stage, which had a significant impact on the quality of the results.
Project results & customer benefits
FSD was able to automate an entire time-consuming and cost-intensive work step through the resulting transformation tool, thus creating a fast and error-free data processing workflow. This scalable workflow for importing data is able to keep pace with the high innovation rate in the automotive industry. The application developed by Avantgarde Labs enables quality-assured standardization of the entire data pool across many manufacturers. In this way, data is linked on the basis of logical relationships in order to identify anomalies. These are either corrected automatically or output to the user for manual correction. The source data can also be supplied incrementally with no difficulties, as the application developed can aggregate the data retrospectively. FSD and Avantgarde Labs continue to collaborate to ensure the solution continues to be developed on an ongoing basis and also so that data for new vehicle models in new formats can be accommodated.
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"Right from the start, we were thrilled with the way our requirements were always grasped quickly and about the flexible collaboration. Avantgarde Labs quickly and comprehensively acquired the know-how necessary for industry-specific solutions. On this basis, further solutions were also found that are successfully in use, despite changing requirements."