Automotive Network Architecture for ECUs Communications

Automotive Network Architecture for ECUs Communications

Fabienne Nouvel (Laboratory IETR-UMR, INSA, France), Wilfried Gouret (Laboratory IETR-UMR, INSA, France), Patrice Mazério (Laboratory IETR-UMR, INSA, France) and Ghais El Zein (Laboratory IETR-UMR, INSA, France)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-338-8.ch004


This chapter deals with automotive networks and the emerging requirements involved by the X-by-wire and X-tainment applications. The introduction of ECUs (Electronic Control Units) has been driven by new market (like navigation, multimedia, and safety). Furthermore, the automotive industry has to face a great challenge in its transition from mechanical engineering towards mechatronical products. Combining the concepts of networks and mechatronic modules makes it possible to reduce both the cabling and the number of connectors. To connect the ECUs, a variety of network technologies are already widespread. A review of the most widely-used automotive networks and emerging ones is given first. To fulfill the increasing demand of intra-car communications, a new technique based on power line communication (PLC) is proposed and reviewed in the second section. On the other hand, there are several infotainment applications (like mobile phones, laptop computers) pushing for the adoption of intra-car wireless communications. Some of the most common wireless technologies that have potential to be used in the automotive domain are considered and different experimentations are presented. Finally, the challenges of these wired or wireless alternative solutions to automotive networks are highlighted.

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