Complexity in modern vehicles consists of an increasingly large multitude of components that operate together. While functional verification of individual components is important, it is also important to test systems of interacting components within a driving environment, both from a functional perspective and from a driver perspective. One proven way for testing is vehicle simulators and in this work the main goals have been to increase flexibility and scalability by introducing a distributed driving simulator platform.
A distributed simulation architecture was designed and implemented, based on user needs defined in a previous project, which divides a driving simulator environment into four major entities with well-defined interfaces. These entities are Session Control, Environment Simulator, Driving Simulator and Vehicle simulator. High Level Architecture (HLA) Evolved, an IEEE standard, was chosen as the standard for communication. HLA Evolved is based on a publish-subscribe architecture, and is commonly used for distributed simulations. The entities and the communication topology are described in detail in the report.
The evaluation of the distributed simulation architecture focused on flexibility and scalability, and on timing performance. Results show that the implemented distributed simulation architecture compared to the non-modified architecture increased flexibility and scalability, as several distributed setups were tested successfully. However, it also has an inherent communication latency due to packaging and sending of data between entities, which was estimated to be one millisecond. This is an effect which needs to be considered for a distributed simulation. Especially if the communication between the Driving Simulator and the Vehicle Simulator is sensitive to such delays. During evaluations of the distributed simulation architecture, the Driving Simulator and the Vehicle Simulator were always located at one site in a low latency configuration.