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Daimler HighTechReport: Rolls, Codes and Intersections

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  • Analysis of real accidents at intersections
  • Flexible roll forming for rapid production
  • Error detection and quality assurance in the software lab
Daimler's accident researchers are working on a sophisticated project for analyzing accidents at intersections. A new metal-forming process enables rapid, economical production of variable bodyshell components. And specialists prevent faults in the software of control units by means of code analysis and software re-engineering. Beginning tomorrow, you can read about these and other fascinating topics such as Daimler’s Hybrid offensive for clean and efficient buses and trucks in the latest issue of Daimler's HighTechReport HTR. Detailed material, such as films, animations, and expert interviews, is also available online at www.daimler.com/innovation.

Watch out!

A great many accidents occur at intersections and turn-offs, and around 80 percent of these are in townships. Daimler's experts are searching for the reasons and devising solutions. After analyzing real accidents, they select some typical situations which they then reconstruct in precise detail in the driving simulator. Under safe laboratory conditions, the reactions of various test persons in identical traffic scenarios can thus be observed. Sensors record reaction times, brake pressures, and steering angles, for example. Miniature cameras in the simulator vehicle monitor the footwell and the driver's posture and face; the results of questionnaires are also taken into account. The goal is an efficient intersection warning system for everyday use which can reliably identify critical situations, issue warnings in good time, and if necessary intervene to prevent an accident.

Flexible profiles are on a roll

Deep-drawing or stamping has until now been the standard method of producing complex sheet metal profiles in automotive manufacture. The engineers from Daimler have now developed an innovative, cost-saving process named "flexible roll forming," in which high-tensile steel sheeting is shaped into bodyshell profiles with variable lengths, cuts, and cross-sections. The advantages are a relatively high level of material utilization and minimum tool wear. On a pilot unit, the experts are currently preparing this process for next year's series production.

The bug busters

The source code for a control unit would fill thousands of pages of small print. Who would want to proofread all that? Special code analysis programs carry out this task in complex software packages. After investigating the various source codes and completing the code analysis, the experts begin to revise the software. As a result of constant further development, software grows substantially over the course of several years. To integrate new functions, the Daimler researchers frequently rely on software re-engineering. In this process, entire programs are reorganized and algorithms that have proven reliable are put into sustainable and readily comprehensible form.

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Daimler HighTechReport: Rolls, Codes and Intersections
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