The concept of the “connected car” is a relatively new expression that has emerged as cars have gradually increased their ability to communicate. Science fiction has for many years predicted communicative and self-driving vehicles, and developments in connectivity should make them a reality in the near future. The complexity of the modern automobile ecosystem continues to increase as more and more technology is added in areas from communications to safety systems. Adding the numerous features required for driving assistance, followed by those that allow fully autonomous driving, will pose questions of safety and reliability, and the only way to guarantee device performance and coexistence is by performing intensive testing all the way from development up to production, including conformance and interoperability or field testing.
Challenges in V2X device testing
V2X (“vehicle to everything”) devices include not only V2X communication capabilities but also navigation, telematics, infotainment and other security elements. When considering test requirements, interference from other services must also be taken into account.
Satisfying stringent requirements becomes mandatory to guarantee interoperability and performance in these applications. Regulations, conformance test specifications and type approval are constantly evolving, and include security aspects to protect against cyber-attacks.
An ideal test solution for V2X device testing should include the following elements:
- Cost efficiency: Field testing is likely to be prohibitive for time and cost reasons. Developers therefore face a challenge to define how much testing, within budget, is enough.
- Flexibility: Typically, as more test categories need to be filled, the list of test equipment required mounts up and so does the cost. A single and flexible test solution is the ideal approach.
- Long-term adaptability: V2X systems are constantly evolving. Device manufacturers will not want to change a complete test system every 2-3 years to cater for new developments.