MTS Systems Corporation, a supplier of automotive test systems and sensors, in collaboration with McLaren Applied Technologies, McLaren’s high-performance design and technology company, have been awarded Automotive Testing Technology International‘s (ATTI) ‘Hardware Innovation of the Year’ award for their MTS Vehicle Dynamics Simulator (VDS). Automotive Testing Technology International is a sister magazine to Vehicle Dynamics International.
The VDS enables real-world driving simulations of vehicle performance to be conducted before physical prototypes are available. Extending ‘driver-in-the-loop’ technology, the VDS allows a ‘driver’ to perform live driving evaluations in order to provide engineers subjective (human) feedback of components, systems and full vehicles in advance of physical prototyping. These early insights help engineers assess driver experience more accurately and earlier in the development cycle.
Future VDS modules will also support the realization of similar speed and efficiencies during development of ADAS, in which the various effects of driving conditions, vehicle performance and reactions are critical developmental evaluation factors. The VDS is especially useful for conducting safe, meaningful studies of driver behavior in response to dramatic road events. The rapid processing and synchronization of performance data with vehicle and terrain models is represented in the dynamic motion platform, with high fidelity providing the human driver with a realistic experience of a range of driving conditions and scenarios.
The fully immersive simulation system replicates nearly every aspect of the driving experience, from the feel of the suspension to the response of the brake pedal, right through to the feedback from the steering mechanism. These capabilities enable developers to conduct detailed analysis of how changes to vehicle designs will impact key performance parameters.
“This award is testament to the hard work that the respective engineering teams of McLaren and MTS are putting into driving forward development of human-centric automotive development tools,” stated Tim Strafford, automotive director at McLaren Applied Technologies.
“The automotive design and development process is changing rapidly,” added Dr. Jeffrey Graves, MTS’s president and CEO. “By integrating physical tests, virtual modeling and human interaction earlier in the process, an array of different benefits can be derived. Our VDS not only compresses product development timelines, it also provides more repeatable and accurate results. This type of simulation testing is becoming increasingly important as the industry migrates toward more autonomous driving solutions.”