Document Type

Conference Paper

Date of this Version



Suggested Citation:
Drolia, U.;Wang, Z.; Pant, Y. V.; Mangharam, R.; , "AutoPlug: An automotive Test-bed for Electronic Controller Unit Testing Verification," IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems Conference (ITSC), 2011.

©2011 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or to reuse any copyrighted component of this work in other works must be obtained from the IEEE.


In 2010, over 20.3 million vehicles were recalled. Software issues related to automotive controls such as cruise control, anti-lock braking system, traction control and stability control, account for an increasingly large percentage of the overall vehicles recalled. There is a need for new and scalable methods to evaluate automotive controls in a realistic and open setting. We have developed AutoPlug, an automotive Electronic Controller Unit (ECU) test-bed to diagnose, test, update and verify controls software. AutoPlug consists of multiple ECUs interconnected by a CAN bus, a race car driving simulator which behaves as the plant model and a vehicle controls monitor in Matlab. As the ECUs drive the simulated vehicle, the physicsbased simulation provides feedback to the controllers in terms of acceleration, yaw, friction and vehicle stability. This closedloop platform is then used to evaluate multiple vehicle control software modules such as traction, stability and cruise control. With this test-bed we highlight approaches for runtime ECU software diagnosis and testing of the stability and performance of the vehicle. Code updates can be executed via a smart phone so drivers may remotely “patch” their vehicle. This closedloop automotive control test-bed allows the automotive research community to explore the capabilities and challenges of safe and secure remote code updates for vehicle recalls management.

Included in

Engineering Commons



Date Posted: 17 November 2011

This document has been peer reviewed.