EDAG opens vehicle dynamics simulation centre in Germany | Autocar Professional


EDAG opens vehicle dynamics simulation centre in Germany | Autocar Professional

The EDAG Group, the world’s leading independent engineering service provider, has put its Zero Prototype Lab into operation in Wolfsburg, Germany. In the state-of-the-art Vehicle Dynamics Simulation Center, customers from all over the world can comprehensively test their vehicles and important functions virtually without the need to develop prototypes. This makes the development process much more efficient, sustainable and also shortens the time to market launch.

With the use of the latest simulation technology, the Zero Prototype Lab is a unique vehicle dynamics simulation centre in Europe. Vehicle movements can be precisely mapped in virtual space. At the centre, there are three test platforms for research and development in the areas of hardware, software and Human Machine Interface (HMI).

The simulation centre is open to all market participants worldwide and makes it possible to drive new vehicles virtually and experience them subjectively. Important functions and their impact chains, such as autonomous driving functions, can be tested in conjunction with the driving system function, steering, braking and acceleration. This enables vehicle manufacturers, for example, to reduce the construction of cost-intensive prototypes and shorten development cycles. In addition, it is possible to optimise driving dynamics in the virtual world on various proving grounds and race tracks under controlled environmental conditions, regardless of the season. Overall, the use of materials and resources can be reduced and the CO2 footprint of the development process can be reduced.

Innovation for motorsport
Whether it’s steering feel, limit behaviour or the chassis: in times of active driving safety and autonomous vehicles, the basic vehicle characteristics are even more challenging to test. This does not only apply to prototypes of large-scale production, the vehicle simulator is also a real gain in motorsport. For racing teams, countless setup variants and specific adjustments for drivers and race tracks are unavoidable. On the driving simulator, a variety of setups on various race tracks can be developed in the shortest possible time to increase performance.

Within the Zero Prototype Lab, all race tracks can be mapped and drivers can familiarize themselves with the tracks before the start of the season. Individual sequences and parameters can be optimized until the desired lap time and the corresponding driving experience are achieved. In a simulation, the same test scenario can be played out over and over again with the desired framework conditions – for example, road surface, tyre material or weather. The wind force is precisely adjusted to the required intensity, just as a snowy landscape can be simulated. Test drives for both applications are therefore no longer dependent on specific seasons.

“With the opening of the Zero Prototype Lab, we are opening a completely new chapter in vehicle development. Technology developers and vehicle manufacturers worldwide can now restructure their development process and work much faster, more efficiently and more sustainably thanks to precise simulation,” explains Harald Keller, CEO of the EDAG Group from 1.7.2024. “In this way, we are driving the ubiquitous change in vehicle development and the mobility industry and enabling future-oriented value creation.”

To achieve this, the EDAG Group relies on state-of-the-art technology: the DiM500 Full Spectrum Simulator (DiM500 FSS) from VI-grade is the largest and most powerful cable-controlled simulator for development, racing and research with a focus on vehicle dynamics, vehicle movement and driver interaction. It can be used to reproduce driving dynamics manoeuvres with a 1:1 ‘motion cueing’. This means that the driver receives realistic movement signals, immerses himself in the virtual environment and can experience a realistic driving experience. In addition to the DiM500 FSS simulator, the Zero Prototype Lab also features a COMPACT Full Spectrum Simulator from VI-grade and the AutoHawk hardware-in-the-loop platform. This enables the driving simulators to be connected to existing and future hardware-in-the-loop test benches.

“With the Zero Prototype Lab, we are further expanding our engineering services and supporting the transformation of the mobility industry,” explains Jork Rother, Senior Vice President Vehicle Integration at the EDAG Group. “The fact that we are now able to carry out the first customer simulations after an intensive planning phase is also thanks to the special commitment of our team of experts, who have driven the realization of this project.”

“We are proud that our Driver-in-Motion Full Spectrum Simulator is at the heart of the new EDAG Zero Prototype Lab,” adds Guido Bairati, Managing Director of VI-grade. “With the DiM500 FSS, our most powerful simulator to date, EDAG is taking its engineering services to an unprecedented level. The DiM FSS Simulator is a quantum leap in experimental simulation, seamlessly integrating driving dynamics, movement, vibration and sound into an immersive and realistic driving experience. I am looking forward to the exciting customer projects that will be created in this forward-looking facility and shape the mobility of tomorrow. 

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