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The impact of quantity and size of core E/E components on the intrastructure of premium automobiles (Bachelorarbeit)

23.01.2013

Victor Petcu


Abstract:

In the last 11 years, technological advances have enabled BMW to introduce a large amount of new features into their automobiles. These features initially are powered by dedicated ECUs and later are integrated into a more central domain controller. While the number of ECUs in automobiles hasn't increased drastically, the number of LIN devices, devices that previously were 'dumb' devices has increased substantially, allowing for the limited expansion of the system ECUs. The various system ECUs, grouped into nine categories, more easily enables one to identify trends among these systems. The trends show that the crash and safety module as well as the body domain controller (BDC) have become two separate units as opposed to in the 7 series 2001, where the crash and safety module was integrated in the gateway and where more than one gateway ECUs were necessary. Further, the geometric properties of the crash and safety module are analyzed for a number of units that substantially differ, and although the crash and safety module that will be used in the upcoming architecture is larger than some previous modules, it does enable the usage of more airbags. The geometry of domain controller is also compared to previous versions of controllers that performed some of its functions and advantages for adopting a centralized domain controller are presented. The degree of connectivity of ECUs is then observed and the implications on the cable harness are shown. The competition's strategy in terms of cable harnesses and door modules, in particular the Audi A6 and Audi A7, are observed and advantages of certain methods are presented. External drivers such as the increasing power of silicon and SoC options, as well as Ethernet are evaluated and their potential impact on the future of the automobile, through large touch screens that can easily be carried throughout product lines to Ethernet backbones that can replace existing bus systems, are put forward. Lastly the possibility of extending the automobiles' voltage level to 48 V in the future is touched on as it would be able to reduce the thickness of the cables and thus lighten the cable harness altogether.