Marburg, Dec 4th, 2017 – VI-grade today announced that Honda R&D selected the newly developed motion platform named DiM250 (Driver-in-Motion) designed by VI-grade and engineered and manufactured by Saginomiya. The new dynamic platform for the driving simulator will be installed in the second half of 2018 at the Honda R&D Europe site in Offenbach, Germany.
“We expect to use DiM250 primarily for vehicle dynamics and ride applications, as well as using it as a crucial tool to develop and test our ADAS, HMI, powertrain and autonomous driving technologies earlier in the design process”, said Yasunori Oku, Executive Vice President, Honda R&D Europe Deutschland. “The DiM250 technology will provide an ideal common development platform for our research and development activities, where all teams involved can work together in one single collaborative environment.”
To reproduce vehicle movements and accelerations, the DiM solution takes a different path into driving simulation and is based on a patented, revolutionary design that has nine actuators. The resulting 9 degrees of freedom configuration enables to go beyond the basic six actuators design of a simple hexapod, providing a larger workspace whilst maintaining high stiffness. This leads to a system suitable for low as well as for high frequencies, as appearing in automotive chassis design. Therefore, the DiM platform enables to investigate both vehicle dynamics and ride and comfort on the same motion platform.
The DIM solution as an ADAS simulation environment will support Honda R&D with a new way of developing vehicles and active control systems: it is possible to frontload activities in the development cycle when prototypes are not yet available. SIL and HIL applications are meeting each other when a driving simulator is used in the vehicle development process.
“We are delighted to report the first installation of our new DiM250 driving simulation technology at Honda R&D Europe”, said Juergen Fett, Managing Director, VI-grade. “We are looking forward to a continuous and successful usage of our technology at Honda R&D, helping the company to develop even better cars in a shorter time, while providing us with precious feedback to further improve our driving simulation solutions.”
The DiM250 configuration provides an extended workspace with respect to the standard DiM150 configuration already installed 9 other times all over the world, guaranteeing extended workspace and an improved driving experience, still within the compact dimensions that characterize all DiM driving simulators.
About DiM (Driver-in-Motion)
The revolutionary driving simulation turnkey solutions from VI-grade provide automotive engineers with a complete set of innovative, integrated driving simulators for a new generation approach to system-level simulation, allowing companies to bridge the gap between virtual prototyping and testing. The dynamic configuration provides motion feedback to the driver thanks to an innovative nine-degrees-of-freedom moving platform with reduced overall dimensions and large travels. The machine architecture is called Driver in Motion (DiM) and its kinematics has been designed, for the first time in history of motion platforms, to implement in the best possible way the motion cueing technology that has been developed and tested by VI-grade. This family of simulators are based on a much more compact and much less expensive driving simulator architecture with respect to conventional simulators with similar workspace. Moreover, these solutions are fully scalable, meaning that it is possible to upgrade from static to dynamic simulator, reusing all components that have been already purchased. The driving simulation solutions from VI-grade are based on VI-DriveSim, the product which provides the core software environment for all driving simulation solutions from VI-grade. For further information, please visit www.driverinmotion.com
About Honda R&D Europe (Deutschland) GmbH
Honda R&D Europe, with locations in Germany, Italy and England, is an integral part of the Honda organization in Europe. As part of its independent organizational structure, Honda R&D Europe cooperates with Honda's distribution centers and production facilities for the automotive and motorcycles product lines in an equal partnership. The European Honda network unites a common goal: tailor-made products for the benefit of European customers. At Honda R&D Europe, predominantly European employees develop mobility concepts for the regional markets. Conception and design of new models as well as extensive driving tests on European roads produce products with independent appearance and advanced technology. The German division of Honda R&D Europe, located in Offenbach, researches and develops technologies for cars, motorcycles, and outboard motors on a worldwide basis.
Saginomiya is the leading provider of automatic controls and test systems in Japan as and is very highly reputed throughout the world for the quality of its products. Saginomiya started developing, manufacturing and selling test systems in 1964, expanding in several business fields such as civil engineering and construction, industrial machinery, railway services, power generation, aviation and automotive. Saginomiya’s “Dynamic Servo” has been developed as the ideal test systems utilizing state-of-the-art core technologies such as electric and hydraulic hybrids as well as a next-generation simulator. Saginomiya is are highly committed to serve the needs of the most technically advanced customers in the global market. For further information, please visit http://www.saginomiya.co.jp/eng.
Marburg, Nov 24th, 2017 – VI-grade today announced the 2018 edition of the Virtual Formula competition.
The Virtual Formula competition is built upon the rules and regulations of the popular Formula SAE and Formula Student. The competition, now at its 9th edition, is based on the usage of VI-Motorsport, VI-grade’s interactive simulation environment for motorsport vehicle modeling and dynamic analysis. All registered teams will be granted access to a complete state-of-the-art racing simulation software to find the best set-up for their car.
The participating teams will be challenged to optimize the performance of a virtual Formula Student racecar, minimizing the lap time during a set of SAE compliant dynamic events. The competition will be won by the team that will score the overall best ranking on the given circuit.
In order to fully support all different vehicle configurations, and in line with the rules and regulations of the Formula Student events, this year's Virtual Formula edition will feature two different competitions, one reserved to combustion engines and one dedicated to electric drivetrain.
The team results will be evaluated by a technical committee formed by vehicle dynamicists. The winning team will be awarded with a complete software package including multiple user access to the VI-Motorsport technology. Additional prizes will be announced soon.
MARBURG (Germany), November 15th, 2017 – VI-grade, the leading provider of best-in-class products and services to bridge the gap between real world testing and technical simulation, today announced the 2018 edition of its International Users Conference.
The event, dedicated to executive managers and experienced engineers belonging to the main automotive and transportation companies, universities and research centers from all over the world, will be held on May 8th-9th, 2018 at the LA PISTA conference center and proving ground, located in the city of Lainate, Italy (in the outskirts of Milan).
The conference will offer to the VI-grade international users community the possibility of discussing the latest simulation trends related to system-level virtual engineering, hardware-in-the-loop, controls and driving simulation. Particular attention will be once again given to VI-grade’s current solutions and development plans for real-time simulation, HIL, SIL, traffic simulation and ADAS, autonomous driving, vehicle energy efficiency and tire modeling. The event will offer keynote and technical papers, podium discussions and workshops, as well as an interesting technical showcase area in which VI-grade and its partners will present their solutions.
The 2018 event will also feature an Ice Breaker social event in the afternoon of May 7th in the same location, where all customers/partners will be invited for an informal get-together and to learn more about the new and forthcoming driving simulation technologies provided by VI-grade and partners.
“Building up on the success of the previous events, we are extremely happy to announce the 2018 edition of our Users Conference, confirming our intent of organizing for our user’s community one major event per year” said Juergen Fett, Managing Director, VI-grade. “We are looking forward to providing to our international users the chance of sharing their latest projects and advancements with our simulation solutions in front of an experienced audience.”
“After a very successful 2017 edition in the city of Turin, Italy, which marked for the first time the milestone of over 200 participants, we are proud of having the chance to host the 2018 edition of our Users Conference once again in Italy” said Guido Bairati, International Sales Director, VI-grade. “The selected location, featuring a proving ground embedded in the conference venue, will provide an ideal setting for all presenters and participants to elaborate on our corporate vision of “bridging the gap” between testing and simulation. We are looking forward to welcoming in Milan a growing number of participants!”
Additional details on the conference program, workshops, location and registration for the event as well as the call for papers will be progressively published at this link: www.vi-gradeUC.com
Marburg, Nov 13th, 2017 – VI-grade today announced an agreement with Applus+ IDIADA, leading company specializing in providing design, engineering, testing and homologation services to the automotive industry, to model and distribute on a worldwide basis their Virtual Proving Ground. Thanks to this agreement, it will be possible to use road data files and graphic scenarios both for offline (on software products such as VI-CarRealTime from VI-grade for real-time vehicle dynamics simulation as well as MSC Adams) and online (on all driving simulation solutions from VI-grade) simulations.
In detail, the test tracks that have already been laser scanned by Applus+ IDIADA will be converted by VI-grade in road data files and high resolution graphic files, in order to be seamlessly used with software products VI-CarRealTime and MSC Adams as well as with VI-GraphSim, the graphic engine of VI-grade’s driving simulators (compact, static and DiM).
“Thanks to this technical and commercial partnership, we expect to further increase our competitiveness in the field of both offline and online automotive simulations” said Guido Bairati, International Sales Director, VI-grade. “This partnership provides yet another classic example of our mission of bridging the gap between testing and simulation and therefore fits very well with our corporate strategy. Customers can now work with Applus+ IDIADA to prepare their vehicle tests on virtual tracks on driving simulators: the same tests can then be executed on real proving ground for further validation. We are looking forward to a fruitful collaboration with Applus+ IDIADA!”
“Having the possibility to offer to our customers also a virtual version of our Proving Ground will open up new business opportunities for Applus+ IDIADA” said Javier Gutierrez, Project Manager. “Simulation tools and driving simulators are becoming more and more instrumental in the vehicle development process and we, at Applus+ IDIADA, are always keen to offer to our leading customers top-edge technologies to support them in their development and testing activities.”
About Applus+ IDIADA
Applus+ IDIADA offers design, testing, engineering, and homologation services to the automotive industry worldwide. Its reputation is founded on the expertise of an international team of more than 2,200 engineers and technical experts, first class facilities, client focus and a constant drive towards innovation. An international network of subsidiaries and branch offices in 25 countries ensures that customers receive a fast and personalized service. The company supports its clients in their product development activities by providing them with engineering, testing and homologation services that fit their needs.
Marburg, Sep 26th, 2017 – VI-grade today announced the release of v18.0 of its software product suite. The release includes major product features and several usability enhancements in the following products: VI-CarRealTime and VI-Driver (real-time software); VI-DriveSim and VI-GraphSim (driving simulation solutions); and VI-Automotive, VI-Rail, VI-Aircraft, VI-MxMount (vertical products). The v18.0 release of VI-Motorcycle and VI-BikeRealTime, the software products dedicated to motorcycle design, as well as VI-Driver for Matlab, will follow in the incoming weeks.
Selected new features of VI-CarRealTime v18.0 include:
Extended driveline model with more modeling options like automatic transmission, dual clutch and torque converter via an intuitive and modular user interface
Improved support for electric and hybrid vehicles
New wizard for building models from K&C data
Parallel tire computation, allowing for more sophisticated road contact models in real-time
Support for new version of MF-Tyre MF-Swift 7.1, specifically designed for real-time applications
Improved VI-Driver Human model with reduced computation time (better support of real-time applications)
Stability improvements of high-end tire models (FTire and MF-Swift).
Adams/Car plugin enhancements:
Full support of Adams Car 2015.1, 2016, 2017 and 2017.1
VI-Road v18.0 features the following enhanced capabilities:
Support for Google KML file format
Improvement of road mesh materials visualization and export
Creation of driver line by hand-picking way points
OpenCRG support improvements
Driver line offset tool through dedicated panel
Selected new features of VI-SuspensionGen v18.0 include:
Enhanced graphic visualization of the suspension
new embedded log widget showing simulation messages
Variable spring/damper connection for DoubleWishBone with Pushrod and U-Bar suspension
Selected new features of VI-Animator v18.0 include:
Customized lighting (ambient, diffuse and specular components)
Toolbar to simplify the creation of calculated component expression
Selected new features of VI-DriveSim v18.0 include:
Reworked parameters panels for active seat, active belts and steering feedback
Handling of test shutdown time (SimulationWorkBench only)
New panel for choosing extra VI-CarRealTime user inputs from vehicle model (SimulationWorkBench only)
Integrated with VI-CarRealTime v.18.0
Support for multithreaded tires calculation with fixed CPU affinity
Automatic steer feedback parameters calculation and deploy
New unified channel for steer feedback
User inputs for vehicle model could be added and mapped to RTDB items
New 'Tire Scrub' plugin based on VI-TireLimits
Enforced checks to avoid streaming NaNs
Added support for air muscle based belt tensioner
Support for up to 32 analog and 32 digital I/O channels
New SAFE WAIT mode in case of workspace limits over passing
Improved vertical high pass filtering
Offline test can load .csv from iodb_csv directly
Offline test can deal with different data frequencies
Offline test now available also as a Matlab object
Data Logging (iodb_csv)
Data stream to Wintax now supports high precision lap time
Improved lap time splitting
Replay module (iodb_res_replay)
Added support for road materials if present
Sound module (iodb_bk)
Support for up to 64 road materials
Stream model is now UDP unicast
Support for all SimSound custom triggers
Added support for Logitech G920
Added support for Fanatech ClubSport
New module to animate with .res data extra cars/objects in the same scene in VI-GraphSim
Added alternative synchronization mechanism with no CPU overhead (Windows only)
Selected new features of VI-Rail v18.0 include:
User defined force elements are now available in Template Builder
Possibility to specify different rolling radii for wheels
Improved contact point visualization
Possibility to define track irregularities using a generic PSD function.
General enhancements of VI-Rail Wear and VI-FlexTack toolkits
Selected new features of VI-Aircraft v18.0 include:
Introduced snubber in equation based single and double stage air-spring
Various enhancements in the NASA T-TR 64 Tire Model
Option to provide stiffness exponent for tie forces in Tiedown Analysis
Reviewed and enhanced tutorials and documentation
Selected new features of VI-MxMount v18.0 include:
UDE definition for replacing Adams Car bushings and create/modify new bushings in Adams/View models
UDE initialization from property file bushing dialog
“The v18.0 releases, that leverage the feedback received by the worldwide user base of the VI-grade solutions, feature an impressive set new capabilities and usability enhancements,” says Roberto De Vecchi, Development Manager, VI-grade. “We are confident that the new release will provide significant added value to our existing customers.”
The new releases, developed on top of Adams2017 and Adams2017.1, are available on the completely revamped VI-grade download area at the link: https://www.vi-grade.com/en/reserved_area/software_download. A complete list of new features and enhancements can be found in the Release Notes documents available for download at the same link.
Marburg, Apr 13th, 2017 – VI-grade today announced that Volvo Car Corporation upgraded the revolutionary motion platform named DiM® (Driver in Motion), already in use at their premises in Torslanda, Sweden, with the newly developed active seat and belts from VI-grade.
“Since its installation back in 2015, we have been using DiM extensively to complement our tool chain, allowing us to physically experience our simulation models using human test drivers” says Carl Sandberg, Vehicle Dynamics Concept Engineer at Volvo Car Corporation. “Through the adoption of the brand new active seats and belts from VI-grade, we expect to further enhance the overall driving experience on our simulator, allowing driving dynamics and active safety systems to be experienced in an even more realistic environment right from the start of the development process.”
“Our active seats are based on cushions inflated by compressed air that apply different levels of pressure on different portions of the body; the effect of the active seat is combined with a proper tensioning of the active belts during braking and helps to better feel steady-state accelerations, which are always limited on driving simulators” said Diego Minen, Technical Director, VI-grade. “We are now fine tuning a new revolutionary Multi-Cueing technique to harmonize platform motions and somato-sensory cues in order to expand the virtual immersion to an unprecedented level of realism. We are looking forward to cooperate with Volvo in order to further improve our driving simulation technology!”
Volvo has announced back in October 2015 the installation of the revolutionary 9 degrees-of-freedom DiM® platform developed by VI-grade and its partners and has since then used it extensively in the development process of new vehicles, such as the S90. The DiM® concept enables the extension of the motion envelope and the separation of low and high frequency contributions, which makes this type of motion platform unique and suitable for both vehicle dynamics and ride studies.
The YouTube video of DiM installed at Volvo is available at this link.
The revolutionary driving simulation turnkey solutions from VI-grade provide automotive engineers with a complete set of innovative, integrated driving simulators for a new generation approach to system-level simulation, allowing companies to bridge the gap between virtual prototyping and testing. VI-DriveSim provides the ability of "feeling" the results of your simulations in a totally immersive environment starting from early phases of the development process. Our driving simulation solutions are available in two different configurations: static and dynamic. The driving simulation solutions from VI-grade are based on VI-DriveSim, the product which provides the core software environment for all driving simulation solutions from VI-grade.
Marburg, January 10th, 2017 – VI-grade today announced that the Würzburg Institute for Traffic Sciences (WIVW), Bayern-based company providing services in the field of human factors, developed an advanced motorcycle riding simulator, relying on VI-grade technology. The development of this dynamic motorcycle riding simulator was part of the ZIM funded project DESMORI, supported by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (KF 2012453RP3; partners: TU Darmstadt (FZD) and BMW Motorrad). In particular, the simulator is taking advantage of the real-time VI-BikeRealTime motorcycle simulation software from VI-grade and, besides for HMI-design, it will be used for rider training as well as research on rider behavior in a broader sense (e.g. hazard perception or implementation of an autonomous brake assist).
“The first motivation to develop an advanced motorcycle riding simulator at WIVW was the implementation in the human factors research and development process” said Sebastian Will, Project manager focusing on powered two-wheeler research, WIVW. “The simulator as research tool allows assessing human-machine interfaces for powered two wheelers in a safe and controlled environment. This extends WIVW’s long-standing human factors experience from the automotive to the motorcycle sector.”
“In order to draw appropriate conclusions from simulator studies, the riders shall find conditions in the laboratory that support them in showing naturalistic behavior: therefore, a simulator needs to meet the riders’ expectations in terms of riding dynamics” concluded Will. “WIVW has chosen VI-BikeRealTime 2016 with a Co-simulation with Matlab/Simulink to solve this. The VI-grade software made it easy to de-couple the VI-rider model from the simulated motorcycle in order to feed the model with the real riders’ input, whereas the Matlab/Simulink co-simulation offered variability regarding additional controller implementation (e.g. stabilization systems, input determination and motion cueing).”
“We are extremely happy to report this activity at WIVW, because it clearly shows the versatility of our software solutions as well as our competence as a team in supporting the development of real-world simulators, not only for the automotive industry”, said Juergen Fett, Managing Director, VI-grade. “We are looking forward to further supporting WIVW and their partners in their exciting and challenging activity.”
VI-BikeRealTime is a modeling, post processing and real-time analysis environment for motorcycle models which allows designers, analysts and track engineers to take into account effects from the motorcycle itself as well as from the road profile and the rider. VI-BikeRealTime is also the ideal platform to perform software-in-the-loop and hardware-in-the-loop activities on a motorcycle model. This is made possible thanks to the interface with MATLAB Simulink and with most widely used HIL platforms. In this way, engineers can first develop reliable control systems in a safe environment and then test them checking how real ECUs interact with the virtual model. ECUs durability under realistic working conditions can be tested as well. VI-BikeRealTime is interfaced with VI-Motorcycle, the ADAMS-based multibody solution for detailed motorcycle models, and therefore real-time models can be automatically derived from detailed multibody models. This approach, already proven to be successful in the automotive industry, allows users to decrease modelling time, to increase confidence in results and to maintain only one database. VI-BikeRealTime has been proven to deliver reliable results in several different projects with leading motorcycle manufacturers. Despite of the fact that the model is simplified, results match very well experimental measurements.
SILAB is a driving simulation software that allows driver-in-the-loop testing of vehicle components in a realistic virtual environment. It offers tools to design traffic scenarios by modelling complex road networks and traffic behavior. The scenarios can be flexibly combined to form reproducible test tracks. During simulation, high quality image rendering and a realistic sound simulation create an immersive impression for the driver. The software supports simulator setups starting from simple desktop systems up to driving simulators with multiple image channels, motion systems and real vehicles as mockups. User defined software and hardware components can be integrated into the driving simulation via common communication protocols (e.g. TCP/IP, CAN-Bus) or by using a flexible SDK. Thereby, SILAB offers detailed access to information on all aspects of the virtual world, e.g. road data, simulated traffic and surrounding objects. All data that is created or measured by the software can be recorded time synchronously. SILAB is used in the fields of R&D, training, medical diagnostics and rehabilitation.
The Würzburg Institute for Traffic Sciences (WIVW) is a company providing research services in the field of human factors. The focus lies on the interaction between humans and technical systems, especially addressing issues arising from the automotive sector. In addition to its research services, WIVW develops and distributes the SILAB driving simulation software. Our long-standing clients in both divisions include private companies and public organizations. WIVW GmbH was founded in 1997. The company employs an interdisciplinary team of research and development specialists. Our team members hold academic qualifications in fields such as psychology, ergonomics, engineering and computer sciences.