Ricardo reveals success of advanced transmission control software at CTI Shanghai

Ricardo reveals success of advanced transmission control software at CTI Shanghai
14 September 2015

In a presentation to the 4th International CTI Symposium, Automotive Transmissions, HEV and EV Drives, hosted today in Shanghai, China, Hauke Karstens, Ricardo chief engineer for drivelines and transmissions, outlined how advanced transmission control software is already significantly reducing product development project time, cost and risk, while also offering the potential of improving driveline performance through self-adaptive strategies.

The highly innovative FAST-R (Flexible Advanced Software for Transmission control from Ricardo) software concept is proving extremely popular with customer OEMs working with Ricardo on turn-key driveline and transmission projects and has, as highlighted by the presentation provided by Hauke Karstens, already delivered significant results in the Chinese market, and worldwide.

One such successful application of FAST-R was the launch into the Chinese market of a novel planetary automatic transmission. The advanced ‘self-adaption’ strategies developed by Ricardo’s engineers proved to be a significant benefit as the project progressed through to production launch readiness and sign-off and demonstrates the know-how of Ricardo’s control engineers in production transmission programs. A large fleet of pre-production vehicles put the FAST-R software through rigorous and thorough testing during many thousands of kilometres of driving. The adaptions ensured that even as the transmission components were subject to differences in manufacturing tolerances and to natural wear during the life of the product, driver satisfaction, and shift quality and shift time remained stable and within targets.

“The FAST-R software concept has been extremely successful in reducing development lead times – by as much as 75 percent in terms of getting the first transmission working on a transmission rig,” commented Lee Sykes, managing director, Ricardo Driveline and Transmission Systems. “It’s a concept that has been developed by and is unique to Ricardo, but as part of our flexible offering we are happy to openly share the technology and know-how with our clients. This is something that customers the world over are benefitting from.”

FAST-R features strategies that can be configured to control a wide range of transmission types including AMT, AT, CVT, DCT, and hybrid powertrains, as well as transmission subsystems including sensors, actuators, clutches, synchronisers, torque converter, parking brakes, and driver interfaces.

Ricardo’s FAST-R software has been developed using state-of-the-art strategies and process. In terms of control methods, closed loop feedback control has been widely used, in order to reduce the number of software parameters that would otherwise need to be calibrated. In terms of process, model based software development with auto code generation has been used, which improves the quality of the software and the efficiency of the development process.


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