ZF offers software solutions
ZF and Microsoft announced that they intend to bring ZF's software engineering processes, methods, and solutions to the speed and quality IT companies lead with. Transforming into a software-driven mobility services provider, ZF says it can scale its global resources more efficiently and better respond to the evolving customer needs. Working with Microsoft, ZF is leveraging Azure cloud services and developer tools, as well as Microsoft’s experience in agile software development.
“In the future, software will have one of the largest impacts on automotive system development and will be one of the key differentiating factors when it comes to realizing higher levels of automated driving functions. We want to help drive this trend forward. The collaboration with Microsoft will enable us to accelerate software integration and delivery significantly. This is important for our customers who appreciate agile collaboration and need short delivery cadences for software updates. Moreover, software will need to be developed when hardware is not yet available,” explained Dr. Dirk Walliser, Corporate Research and Development at ZF.
ZF will then combine its know-how as a system developer for the automotive industry with the added advantage of significantly higher speeds for software development.
“Digital capabilities will be key for automotive companies to grow and differentiate from their competition. DevOps empowers development and operations teams to optimize cross-team collaboration across automation, testing, monitoring and continuous delivery using agile methods. Microsoft is providing DevOps capabilities and sharing our experiences with ZF to help them become a software-driven mobility services provider,” said Sanjay Ravi, General Manager, Automotive Industry at Microsoft.
“cubiX”: Chassis of the future from code
At CES 2020, ZF says it will showcase its vision of software development with “cubiX”, a software component that gathers sensor information from the entire vehicle and prepares it for an optimized control of active systems in the chassis, steering, brakes, and propulsion. Following a vendor-agnostic approach, “cubiX” will support components from ZF as well as third-party components.
“'cubiX' creates networked chassis functions thanks to software: By connecting multiple vehicle systems such as electric power steering, active rear-axle steering, the sMOTION active damping system, driveline control, and integrated brake control, ‘cubiX’ can optimize the behavior of the car from one central source. This enables a new level of vehicle control and thus can increase safety—for example in unfavorable road conditions or in emergency situations,” said Walliser.
ZF plans to start projects with first customers in 2020 and will offer “cubiX” from 2023 either as part of an overall system or as an individual software component.
ZF at CES 2020
In addition, ZF will present its systems for automated and autonomous driving at CES. They comprise of sensors, computing power, software, and actuators.
For passenger cars, Level 2+ systems pave the way for a safer and more comfortable means of private transportation. New mobility solutions like robo-taxis are designed to safely operate with ZF’s Level 4/5 systems. Additionally, ZF’s integrated safety systems will be on display, like the Safe Human Interaction Cockpit. Software utilizing artificial intelligence to provide new features and further-developed mobility offerings will also be highlighted.
The press conference will be held Monday, Jan. 6, 2020, at 8:00 a.m. (PST) at Mandalay Bay, Lagoon E & F. A livestream will be available at www.zf.com/CESlive. ZF’s booth will be at LVCC, North Hall, booth 3931.