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Learn how to create and run real-time virtual vehicles and Driver-in-the-Loop simulators to safely test and validate your new designs.

Learn How to

  • Use Vehicle Dynamics Blockset™ to model complex vehicle dynamics and driving maneuvers 
  • Create real-time simulations of virtual vehicles with Simulink Real-Time™ and Speedgoat target hardware 
  • Employ Simulink’s interface to Unreal Engine® and visualize driving scenarios 
  • Set up a driving simulator with pedals and a steering wheel to perform driver-in-the-loop testing 

Key Benefits

  • Start with library blocks and pre-built reference examples out-of-the-box 
  • Save time and money by replacing in-vehicle testing with virtual vehicle simulators 
  • Customize your vehicle model and easily interface with your Simulink controls 
  • Efficiently iterate and test edge scenarios, in a repeatable, reproducible and safe environment 
  • Rapidly deploy your models on real-time hardware without leaving MATLAB® and Simulink®

Reference Example

Common Applications

Driver-in-the-Loop (DIL) simulators have traditionally played an essential role in supporting automotive manufacturers during research and development phases. They allow us to validate critical components such as steering systems with virtual vehicle simulation. ADAS and automated driving features further add to the complexity of systems, so it is required to test various scenarios at an early stage. With a real-time DIL simulator, embedded hardware and control algorithms can be tested and optimized before deploying the model to the vehicle. Automotive engineers are relying more and more on virtual vehicle simulation and DIL simulators to synthesize data for edge scenarios and to test specific assisted driving problems, for instance, control handover and platooning.

Virtual vehicle solutions can be cumbersome to use, due to their complexity, and are frequently geared towards vehicle dynamics experts. As part of your optimal solution, you want to interface with the vehicle plant model and external driver inputs simply and seamlessly directly within Simulink®. You would like a flexible and easily customizable vehicle plant model, so the solution can adapt and grow with your needs. Furthermore, you want to run your models in hard real-time, so that it allows you to interface with embedded control units or prototyping hardware.

An Integrated Solution

Using Speedgoat hardware, together with Simulink®, Simulink Real-Time™, and Vehicle Dynamics Blockset™, you can tackle all these requirements. Our solution provides you with a convenient way to adapt and customize existing models of entire vehicles that flawlessly integrate with MATLAB® tools, Simulink® controls, and external driver inputs. This enables you to build real-time capable DIL simulators quickly.

A typical DIL set up based on our solution can be implemented as follows:

  • Simulink Real-Time™ application, generated from your Simulink model of the virtual vehicle, running on a Speedgoat real-time target machine.
  • GPU-enabled Host PC running Simulink model with Unreal Engine® interface that provides photorealistic and smooth 3D renderings of the driving scenario.
  • External driver input hardware capable of providing a realistic driving experience, including force-feedback.


Scaling to Your Needs

The realistic controls and compelling 3D visualization immerse you in the simulated scenario, while capturing high-fidelity data of the vehicle dynamics and the behavior of the tire and road surface in real-time. Furthermore, Speedgoat target hardware can be adapted to interface with real steering systems that use standard automotive protocols such as CAN, CAN FD, and many others.

Similar configurations can be used for a more conventional ADAS or automated driving hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) simulator to recreate and test the entire autonomous software stack through leveraging the fully scalable and expandable hardware from Speedgoat with an integrated software solution.

Download the Speedgoat DIL reference example and learn how to create and run real-time virtual vehicles and DIL simulators on Speedgoat real-time hardware, directly from MATLAB® and Simulink®.


The Author

Timo Strässle

Timo Strässle
Application Engineer

Product Highlights

Vehicle Dynamics Blockset™

The Vehicle Dynamics Blockset™ provides a set of library blocks (modeling propulsion, steering, suspension, vehicle bodies) and reference examples, which allow you to start with virtual vehicle simulation without requiring modeling expertise. You can easily customize these reference models by using your parameters or by replacing subsystems with your models for advanced usage. Vehicle Dynamics Blockset™ fully integrates with Simulink®, simplifying the interface with existing Simulink®-based controls. Furthermore, it is optimized for real-time simulation and deployment on Speedgoat real-time hardware.

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