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Comparison: Using a Real-Time System as Controller vs an Embedded Controller

Criteria Real-time target machine acting as a controller Embedded controller
Time required to run algorithms created from Simulink Seconds Hours to weeks. Time consuming hand coding may be required.
Implications of software changes Simply update the Simulink design, and automatically regenerate the application and download to the target machine. Test your design in real-time using Simulink external mode, GUIs, or automated scripts. Implementing and testing software design changes can be very time consuming.
Implications of hardware requirements changes Real-time target machines can be expanded with additional I/O at any time. Expensive and time consuming hardware redesigns may be required.
Internal knowledge management and documentation Simulink models are easy to understand for new team members, and the generation of documentation can be automated. Without carefully maintained documentation, changes in the team may significantly impact knowledge of designs.
Early detection of design failures Powerful real-time testing and logging capabilities for the detection of bugs at early as possible. Limited and oftentimes time consuming debugging possibilities.
Guarantee that deterministic real-time sample rates and frequencies are met Speedgoat has extensive expertise in matching controller configuration to project specific requirements. Can be difficult to predict, multiple software and hardware design iterations may be required.
Supply chain management, long-term availability, and lead times Sourcing complete controllers simplifies procurement, and Speedgoat stock management services shorten lead times. Most components are typically available for 7+ years. Searching, sourcing, and managing availability of a wide range of components can be time consuming. Integration and testing replacement components can be a lengthy process.