The following is a snapshot of an in-depth white paper published by Siemens. If you like what you read, you can find out more about this topic here.
Over the years, multicore processing has evolved in the automotive industry from dual-core to quad-core. Since then, providers have listened to consumers and provided additional resources and computer power to electronic control unit (ECU) developers. While they’re still providing additional cores, they’re also adding specialties, such as real-time cores, digital signal processors (DSPs), and soft cores. This has led to the development of diverse or heterogeneous hardware being consolidated onto a single system on a chip (SOC) (see Figure 1).
To fully leverage heterogeneous hardware, we need to look at it from a software perspective.
Heterogeneous software solutions and architectures use heterogeneous hardware. For example, there may be general-purpose operating systems, real-time operating systems (RTOSes), and bare metal applications all running on different types of cores. Some key considerations include how the system will boot, how communications will transpire across a shared workload, and so on.
These chips have a high degree of complexity. Take, for example, the S32G Vehicle Network Processor. This processor consists of a set of Cortex A53 Application Processors and a number of Cortex M7 devices. In some cases, they have dual A72s, some R5s, various types of memory in peripherals, and communication blocks throughout the chip (see Figure 2).
With this complexity, the amount of software required grows. With additional compute power, you can lower your cost by consolidating everything onto a single SOC. This brings about new challenges – not the least of which is achieving mixed-safety criticality.
Learn more about Siemens solutions for the Automotive industry here. Also, check out the following webinars:
- On-demand Webinar: Bringing automotive embedded software in-house
- On-demand Webinar: Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) of ECU software