Hardware architecture exploration: automatic exploration of distributed automotive hardware architectures

Johannes Eder, Sebastian Voss, Andreas Bayha, Alexandru Ipatiov and Maged Khalil

Software and Systems Modeling, 19:911–934

July 2020 · doi:10.1007/s10270-020-00786-6


As the engineering of distributed embedded systems is getting more and more complex, due to increasingly sophisticated functionalities demanding more and more powerful hardware, model-based development of software-intensive embedded systems has become a de facto standard in recent years. Among other advantages, it enables design space exploration methods allowing for frontloading techniques which support a system architect already at early stages of development. In this paper, we want to present an approach which is capable of automatically generating automotive E/E architectures (electric/electronic architecture; in-car network of processing units and buses). Based on the concept of viewpoints, we will introduce dedicated technical meta-models, a language to formally describe a hardware architecture exploration problem and an automatic exploration approach using satisfiability modulo theories. We will furthermore introduce a dedicated methodology and show how an exploration integrates into a system development process. In the end, we will evaluate our approach by applying it to an industrial use case provided by Continental.

subject terms:AutoFOCUS3, design-space exploration, DSE, architecture synthesis, deployment synthesis, HW/SW co-design, model-based systems engineering, MbSE, case study