Abstract: In-vehicle driving tests for evaluating the performance and diagnostic functionalities of engine control systems are often time consuming, expensive, and not reproducible. Using a hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) simulation approach, new control strategies and diagnostic functions on a controller area network (CAN) line can be easily tested in real time, in order to reduce the effort and the cost of the testing phase. Nowadays, spark ignition engines are controlled by an electronic control unit (ECU) with a large number of embedded sensors and actuators. In order to meet the rising demand of lower emissions and fuel consumption, an increasing number of control functions are added into such a unit. This work aims at presenting a portable electronic environment system, suited for HIL simulations, in order to test the engine control software and the diagnostic functionality on a CAN line, respectively, through non-regression and diagnostic tests. The performances of the proposed electronic device, called a micro hardware-in-the-loop system, are presented through the testing of the engine management system software of a 1.6 l Fiat gasoline engine with variable valve actuation for the ECU development version.
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2006 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.