Contract-Based Integration of Automotive Control Software

Tobias Sehnke1,a, Matthias Schultalbers1,b and Rolf Ernst2
1Gasoline Engine Systems, IAV GmbH.
2Institut for Datentechnik und Kommunikationsnetze, Technische Universität Braunschweig.


The functionalities of automotive control are distributed over a large number of independently developed components that are interconnected by complex data dependencies. During integration it is critical to ensure the functional correctness of each component, due to the safety-critical nature of the automotive system. Thus existing integration processes ensure that interfaces are syntactically correct. Still in many cases communicated signals are semantically incompatible. This results in complicated errors that are hard to detect and fix. Moreover, existing component languages do not provide applicable means for the description and control of correspondent requirements. In this paper we present a novel methodology for an automated identification of integration errors in automotive control software. The key aspect of our approach are contracts, which are used to disclose domain level requirements. These contracts are then checked during integration supported by existing tools. A case study involving an existing engine control software shows the applicability of our approach by detecting a significant number of formerly unknown integration errors.

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