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Role of Bluetooth in Automotive Applications

Bluetooth in Cars:

The new generations of cars will have an increasing number of micro controllers connected via two or more networks. An advantage of this is that the car can be individually customized by software, another that the car to great extent can have self diagnostic functions. To fully use such features, it is necessary to have a bidirectional communication between the car system and production tools as well as service tools for down loading new software and parameters and uploading of status and diagnostic messages. These production and service tool will, to a great extent be based on pc technology. The connection between car system and the tool is made via a cable, either directly to the CAN(Controller Area Network) bus via a gateway. The cheapest way is to connect the pc directly to the CAN bus by drip line but this has to be short. According to the CAN standard it should be less than 39 cm at 1 Mbit/s bitrate. Compare with USB and Bluetooth, the mobility and versatility has highly performed Bluetooth.

Bluetooth in car production:

In the car production a lot of software is downloaded as final step in the production line. This is an application where Bluetooth would be ideally suited. Bluetooth base station is connected to the production field bus. When the car on line gets connected to the Bluetooth base station, it uploads it serial number. The production computer then downloads the software for this very car via the field bus to the base station, which in turn transmit it to the car. However, this is a dedicated use and no other Bluetooth units than those installed in the cars should get connected to the cell.

Bluetooth for car service:

A scenario for using Bluetooth could be:
1) When the car enters the service station, its Bluetooth station gets contact with the service stations main computer. This has previously exchanged information with the car computer via the cell phone system.
2) The service station main computer alerts the service man allotted the task and his PC establishes contact with the car and downloads any information needed.
3) The serviceman gets any work instructions needed on his PC. When servicing the car, he can control and adjust several functions via the PC, e.g., any lights, windows, climate control, engine parameters, etc. He can also download the latest software versions to any Electronic Control Unit (ECU)
CAN/Bluetooth basics:

CAN was developed to be a base for a highly reliable communication via a twisted pair of wires that could be applied from very simple tasks to advanced real time control. To achieve this goal, it is based on the principle that every node in a system simultaneously checks each bit transmitted on the bus. By this principle a row of problems like buss access, collision detection, data consistency, etc. are solved in an elegant way. However, the condition that every node should see the same bit at the same time requires a controlled wave propagation time. This is easily achieved in a wired system but hard to achieve in a wireless system. Therefore, any wireless transmissions in CAN systems have to be made via gateways and Bluetooth offers the best possibilities for this task among the available radio standards.

The ideal Bluetooth concept for diagnostics:
The ideal Bluetooth concept for diagnostics should show the following qualities:
1 Low cost
2 Performance as needed
3 Standards as needed

To reach these goals we must have a low cost, high performance Bluetooth unit that can be used for any application. Then it has to be stripped from everything not needed by everyone, i.e., a concept like CAN. CAN provide the basic features needed by any controller network, but remaining features required have to be provided by an additional higher layer protocol. The basic Bluetooth block should take care of the RF part and the essential part of the baseband protocol that is of no or minor interest for any application but essential for the Bluetooth functionality.

Communication during production:

Using wireless communication between the vehicle and the automation system of the production line could open a way to completely new functions in the production process. Depending on the step in the process, for example during final assembly, the vehicle controller and controllers of the production line are able to exchange status information both about the product and the process.

Communication during service:

Potential applications during service can easily be derived from the scenario for the production process described above. Wireless communication between the vehicle and a computer of the service station can be used to exchange status information and service specific information. This step may be supported by a preceding data exchange using telecommunication. Wireless communication in combination with a mobile service computer offers optimum flexibility to the service personnel.

Advantages and Benefit:

The most important advantages of wireless technologies for technical tasks are more or less hidden to the vehicle customer. The benefit of such a solution is the increase in flexibility, modularity and reliability. Although the benefit cannot be experienced directly by customers it is nonetheless important for automotive industry. Additionally the potential of wireless communication on the level of technical tasks between intelligent devices and control units inside the vehicle as well as control units and man machine interfaces in the surrounding area of the car may lead to new functionalities and an increase in flexibility during production and service. The benefit for the customer is an increase in reliability. For the phases of product development the increase in flexibility is a great benefit. A simplified cable harness and wireless interfaces are advantages for manufacturing. For service, maintenance, and repair wireless interfaces are advantageous with respect to disassembly and assembly of parts. Additionally wireless communication opens possibilities for flexible connections to man machine interfaces and diagnostic systems. Although in general an electronic component for a wireless transmission unit is more expensive than a cable, there are several possibilities to reduce product cost, for example by standardization and by reduction of assembly efforts.

Conclusion:

There is a potential of up to hundreds of million per year Bluetooth nodes within the vehicle manufacturer market if Bluetooth can be used for real time control and other technical tasks. For several years a major trend in vehicle development has been the increasing number of electrical and electronic systems. Many of these systems have been introduced to offer innovations to the customer by an increase in functionality, comfort, and safety. Another reason is the partial replacement of mechanical components by electrical components or their integration into mechatronic systems.

References
1) Bluetooth in Automotive Applications
Lars-Berno Fredriksson, KVASER AB
2) The Potential of Bluetooth in Automotive Applications
Horst Wunderlich and Martin Schwab, DaimlerChrysler R&T, Germany Lars-Berno Fredriksson, Kvaser AB, Sweden
3) Optimizing Bluetooth Wireless Technology
as the Ideal Interface for Car Diagnostics -Lars-Berno Fredriksson, Kvaser AB, Sweden

Best Future Automotive Maintenance Technology Considered

As a lover of technology, perhaps you too, I think I can surely relate with those who find revolutionary Google Glass applications. Such technology is a long time coming and much like 3-D printing it will change everything. Having been in the automotive sector prior to retirement (Franchisor of mobile car wash businesses) my mind usually looks at all new technology for possible automotive applications. Okay so, let’s see how this new innovation will be taken to a whole new level – let’s talk.

There was an interesting article in MIT Technology Review Blog on September 17, 2013 titled; “Google Glass as a Hands-Free Instruction Manual – A new app for Google’s head-mounted computer helps beginners with car maintenance,” by Tom Simonite which got me thinking about a once promising technology someone had come up with ten years ago, but which to date has not been implemented. The article stated; “Augmented reality company Metaio just released video of an idea that seems to make more use of the form of Google Glass.”

The article accompanied a YouTube video titled; “Metaio to Unveil First Hands-Free Car Manual on Google Glass,” by a company that has such an application ready for action.

Yes, this might be even better than the concept MIT was working on for Boeing with holographic displays alongside equipment being worked on – which would be an extension of their now decade old tablet display units. The Google Glass takes it all to a new level, better than anything or better than anyone could imagine. Essentially, you could work in a duality – blending the real world with the virtual one – immersed in instructions from an augmented 3-D image overlaying your work station or work. That is essentially what we are talking about here.

Think about seeing the object you are working on in 4-D, that is to say you’d be able to see inside the engine or motor you are working on, into the interior components, all they while you are working on the outside components removing shrouds, covers, and parts. Imagine working on a piece of infrastructure or jet engine and your Google Glass was hooked up to sensors, allowing you to see the problem in the interior as you are working. All live, all connected, and all-knowing – cool right – I know!

Think what this will do for car racing, prototype building, or the local dealership fixing, maintaining or updated your electric Tesla sports sedan. Yes, awesome. Please consider all this and think on it.

Automotive Manufacturer Software Solutions

The automotive manufacturing industry began small, with early autos being little more than replacements for the horse drawn buggies of the day. They used a steam or gas engine to replace the work done by the horse. Then, with Henry Ford’s innovative assembly line concepts, the automotive industry picked up speed. No longer were cars built one at a time by skilled craftsmen, now they could be built many at a time and the level of skill the workers needed was greatly reduced as they only worked on one part of the machine, over and over. The problems facing an automotive manufacturer like Henry Ford were certainly much different than they are today. The process of assembling a Model T was by any modern standard few steps and very simple ones as well.

Today’s automotive manufacturer has to design and implement processes to cover a wide range of issues Henry Ford could never have imagined. With hydraulic, electrical, computer and drive systems all failure prone areas which require accurate, concise processes to be assembled efficiently and reliably, more than just the human touch is required. That is where the computers of the modern age come in. More specifically, that is where automotive manufacturing software solutions come into play.

How Can Software Help?

There are very few industries today that don’t leverage the benefits of manufacturing management software and the auto industry is no different. Putting together a modern car relies on many thousands of processes coming together and working seamlessly together. Without some kind of automotive manufacturing software solution, tracking and monitoring all of these processes would be an impossible task. By using software for process management, countless hours of tedious process design and testing can be accomplished on the computer, not on the factory floor where every part wasted and minute of downtime count.

What Can It Do?

Process management software can do many things, depending on the product used. The most beneficial will feature a robust system allowing for total commercial automotive manufacturer software integration. These suites can allow you to build your process on the computer, not through trial and error. Once a process is completed, testing itself can be done in this virtual space. The process can then be implemented and monitored, helping to find portions of the process that can be done more efficiently or safely, with the changes then applied in real time to the process itself. This level of control can be applied to any number of processes allowing for even the most complex production to be broken down into its constituent components.

Where To Find More Information Online?

There are many good places to find more information about automotive manufacturer software solutions online. Some good places to start include researching on Google and looking at some of the top manufacturing software web sites. Choosing the right application for your business may take some time. However, implementing a successful automotive process management software system can offer a huge return. Take your time and you will reap the rewards.

The Automotive Employment Market Is Still an Open Playing Field

In the automotive employment market there are still very attractive job opportunities available all over the world. So if you are in the automotive employment market and want to make a change there are still a lot of opportunities all over the world.

In this modern world there do exist a massive shortage highly skilled automotive technicians all over the world. So if you are a highly skilled auto technician you can choose where you want to work in the world.

By just applying on one of the many automotive recruitment companies web pages, and they will search a job opportunity for you any place in the world. The fact is that a lot of emerging automotive markets have opened up in reasoned years, due to the power shift in the automotive industry.

This automotive employment market is going to become even bigger in the future as all new type of cars is going to hit the market. Like all the “EV” cars that are still in the prototype phase. All these cars will have new technology implemented into them, so new personnel must be trained to work on them in the future.

This will bring a paradigm shift into this automotive employment market, even the training methods and the skill sets that must be trained have to change in the very near future.

This will cause the manufacturers to start running extensive training and develop programs, to have highly skilled technicians to assist them to establish their brand. There will be coming new brands and brand name into the playing field and these brands will need to still build their names in the market place.

To build a brand name you need a powerful after sales service you can assist your customers with. This alone will create a new automotive employment market to the auto industry; just imagine an electronic or chemical engineer working at your local car dealership.

It may sound farfetched but it is possible as the cars in the future will be driven with power plants like fuel cells, hydrogen emission and electric motors. All of this is going to come to the market place in this modern world sooner than most of us do realize. So the predictions are that a big portion of the existing automotive workforce will leave.

They will leave this workforce as they are from the old school with old school principles that will become extinct with this new technology. The human tendencies are that you will stay ignorant if you become a member of the old school club. This only happens as the older people were conditioned that they can only learn something up to a certain age. All of us know this is not true but the system wants them to leave as it is harder to change and old horse to get rid of his or her habits

The system was created to develop a group of slaves that would be easier to condition, into what this slave system needs and not what the workers needs. That is one of the reasons why the older leading hands in the automotive employment market gets removed or retrenched. The general modern business conceptions are that older people are resisters to modern business, as they don’t want to change.

If all this highly skilled people are removed in the future the whole automotive industry will suffer a massive skills and brain lost that could have passed on to the younger people. Findings are that most of this older people in the automotive industry don’t want to share their knowledge and skills anymore, because they don’t see themselves as resistors for future development in the automotive industry.

So the automotive employment market will suffer great losses in the near future, due to this phenomenon.

Rocco van Rooyen is an Author on Automotive Solutions. As an Entrepreneur and Author on the subject, he is at the forefront to provide solutions to all automotive related problems.